People interested in becoming law firm administrators should clearly understand what it takes to have a successful career. Needful education and skills may vary depending on the job description. Below, we discuss the steps to becoming a law firm administrator.
1. Earn a bachelor’s degree
A bachelor’s degree is vital for a law firm administrator. Employers prefer degrees in fields such as business administration or legal administration.
Choosing a university that offers a bachelor’s degree program in legal administration is advantageous for prospective law firm administrators. The program provides law-related modules that include legal ethics, legal writing, types of legal codes and record keeping. It is also inclusive of units in escrow, torts and the correct purchasing strategies. These units equip them with the knowledge necessary for them to handle legal matters in their workplaces.
A degree in business administration is vital in equipping law firm administrators with leadership skills and the knowledge required to manage the business and its personnel. The degree offers business-related modules such as finance, management, human resource and operations.
Law firm administrators can also enroll in introductory computer courses separately since computer skills are essential in their daily tasks. They are required to conduct research, electronically manage legal systems and write reports. Knowledge in the operation of software systems used in billing is vital too.
2. Obtain relevant work experience
Employers in the legal fields prefer to hire law firm administration candidates with relevant work experience. Potential administrators can apply for internship programs where they gain skills in clerical and management aspects. Through such programs, they gain familiarity with legal professionals, which opens up future employment opportunities for them gradually. Law firm administrators can also work entry-level positions in law firms where they take up assistant roles.
After campus, some law firm administrators join professional organizations. These organizations offer new graduands an opportunity to learn more about the field and grant them networking opportunities. Organizations such as the Association of Legal Administrators offer professional assistance through webinars, conferences and networking gatherings. Such resources are essential in guiding them towards career advancement.
3. Seek employment as a legal administrator
The experience gained by law firm administrators while practicing on the intern or assistant level is vital. It helps them access advanced career opportunities such as the management of an entire law department. Law firm administrators can also handle legal and official contracts in different institutions such as schools, hospitals and corporations. These administrators have many possible work environments that lead to career satisfaction—for example, private law firms, courts, non-profit organizations and government institutions.
Acquiring certification is an additional qualification that allows law firm administrators to progress their careers. It is not mandatory to obtain accreditation in this field, but it potentially increases employee value. The Association of Legal Administrators offers a Certified Legal Manager accreditation when an administrator passes the association’s examinations.
The right qualification, education and skills enable law firm administrators to pursue careers in passionate fields.