Cutting Through the Clutter for Junior Associates

Cutting Through The Clutter For Junior Associates
Associate training is a never ending concern for law firms. It seems like everywhere you turn someone has an opinion on how to mold and mentor new associates. From shadowing senior counsel to sharing stories of prosperity and failure to developing a full-scale mentorship program, there’s no absolute way to measure success. 

The majority of law firm partners admit that young lawyers will soon dominate the legal field. They also recognize, however, that junior associate attrition is an industry-wide growing concern from both a financial and non-financial standpoint. The cost to train new associates is substantial. It’s estimated to take between $200,000 and $400,000 to train each one – a huge investment for any mid-sized firm. In addition, due to escalating associate turnover, the average big law firm loses an estimated US $25 million each year. New lawyers are choosing less traditional career paths, including leaving law firms altogether. Law firms need associates to be providing optimal client service and the challenges just keep growing.

So how does your law firm allow associates to hit the ground running and stick around? One step is simple – young lawyers are digital natives.  Technology is their second language, so make sure to give them all the necessary technology and tools they need to make an impact.  

The most successful firms know that the use of innovative technology can increase revenue growth and produce the best results from their newer lawyers. Young associates often struggle when researching a new subject, spending hours scanning the internet and only finding inaccurate and unreliable information. Primary law resources can be out of date or difficult to understand. Finding samples for drafting documents or agreements in the firm’s management system may be outdated and include incorrect terms or missing information.
This is where Practical Law Canada from Thomson Reuters shines. With access to gold-standard resources and expert guidance, Practical Law Canada provides new associates with a better starting point, reducing the learning curve and allowing them to make an immediate contribution to the firm. It provides lawyers with exclusive content and senior-level guidance to deliver up-to-date, expertly drafted documents with in-depth annotations, all in an easy to navigate technology platform.

How Practical Law Can Help 


With Practical Law Canada, you make more of your limited time with trusted answers when you need them most. Whether you work in a law firm or law department, Practical Law Canada helps you practice more efficiently, quickly familiarize yourself with new practice areas, and stay on top of key changes in the law. Below is a breakdown of just a few of the resources available with Practical Law Canada. 

Draft With Confidence


Standard documents give new associates a better starting point when drafting and help them to avoid rookie mistakes. These up-to-date model forms include helpful explanations, including drafting and negotiating tips and guidance for when and why to include a specific provision.

Get Hours Back in Your Day


Associates can use checklists to check their work and ensure that they have covered all the bases before turning an assignment over for review. Practical Law checklists help new associates get the job done correctly the first time, saving everyone time.

Deliver a More Polished Product


Giving associates the right tools to help them learn independently and ask fewer questions lets them gain the confidence they need to be successful lawyers. If associates start with quality model forms, they need fewer rounds of edits to their assignments. And when they can provide quality, accurate work efficiently, you don’t need to write off their time.

For Lisa Roszell, associate at Barriston Law, Practical Law adds a level of confidence that the documents she is drafting meet the unique needs of her client's situation. "There is the confidence in knowing that other lawyers have used these and they've covered the various legal issues that you need to watch out for. Rather than me having to look through four or five documents to figure out how they address a certain issue, I can just look to the drafting notes and see it immediately," she says."

When it comes to getting the most out of junior associates, mentorship will always be needed.  However, equipping young lawyers with an arsenal of tools and technology tailored to efficiency and accuracy is just as important. Practical Law Canada can get you there.

Learn more about how this tool can help your firm leverage Associates. 

Leveraging Technology for Associate Development is Crucial for Mid-Sized Firm ›
White Paper: Dramatically reduce new associates' learning curve to increase firm profitability


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