There is an old Chinese saying “Better to be a dog in times of tranquility than a human in times of chaos”. I am not sure if I subscribe to this as 2021 was indeed a year of chaos but at the same time, there were many positives. We started Elias Recruitment in May 2000 and have seen many economic cycles, up and down. Often when business confidence is up the transactional lawyers are going gangbusters and then when recessions hit the family lawyers, litigators and insolvency folks get busy. However in 2021 everyone was busy. Lawyers seemed to have more work than pre-covid despite the best efforts of a global pandemic and often kneejerk reactions from politicians sending us into extended lockdowns. 

The recruitment market has been the busiest we have seen it. Despite having expanded our team to 10, everyone is still flat chat. I attribute this in part to the lack of supply of decent experienced lawyers open to changing jobs and unprecedented demand for lawyers across firms, inhouse and government. 

At the same time, the quality and quantity of ad response from job boards like SEEK have dwindled and often risk-averse lawyers have been hesitant to change jobs in an unpredictable and volatile market. The Great Resignation often touted overseas is yet to be replicated here. I predict there may be more movement towards March 2022 depending on how the new Omicron strain plays out. In the meantime we have had great success with direct approaches to lawyers as well as using technology to map every lawyer in the state. Many candidates we work with are exclusively represented by Elias Recruitment. This means that we can partner effectively with them and make sure our clients have first access to the cream of the crop that cannot be found elsewhere. 

As we hurtle towards the end of the year, I wanted to thank all our clients and colleagues who have supported us this last year and beyond. We wish you and your colleagues all the best for the holiday season and a safe, rewarding and successful 2022. 

Jason Elias
Elias Recruitment

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