Posted by Robert Half Legal on Tuesday, November 10, 2015 - 08:00 | Follow me
Are you hoping your career development plan will lead you to a legal support position? If so, you’ll be pleased to learn that the Robert Half Legal Salary Guide reports renewed demand for legal secretaries next year.
But what does it take to become a legal secretary? And where could this career development path lead after you’ve landed this role? Let’s take a look.
Education and experience
While it isn’t an absolute must that you have a post-secondary degree to be a legal secretary, most employers prefer it. And if you hope to work in a firm that specializes in a hot practice area such as healthcare, you may be required to have a strong grasp of industry specifics.
The necessary skill set
There are a variety of skills needed to be an outstanding legal secretary, from the ability to multitask and budget your time to strong interpersonal and soft skills. Additionally, increased client service demands have resulted in a need for legal professionals who are adept at client management. However, we’re also seeing an emphasis on tech skills. In addition to proficiency in standard software programs such as Microsoft Word, more employers want legal secretaries with a solid knowledge of:
- Video conferencing platforms
- Case management software
- Legal research tools
- Litigation support programs
- Billing software
Taking career development to the next level
To advance your career, it’s always a good idea to invest in professional development. And earning a certification such as the Professional Legal Secretary (PLS) designation from the Association for Legal Professionals (NALS) can give you an advantage over the competition.
Experience, education and professional development can all be key to landing a legal secretary position and advancing in your new career. But don’t underestimate the value of asking for help in your next job search. Developing a strong relationship with a specialized legal recruiter can be extremely beneficial to your career path. Legal staffing specialists can give you additional insight on what skills you’ll need to hone to land your ideal position, as well as which positions would best dovetail with your career goals and aspirations.
The market is growing for legal secretaries, so don’t hesitate when it comes to taking steps to further your career development.
Ready to look for a new challenge in the legal field? See what open positions Robert Half Legal has listed in your area.