While there is growing acknowledgement that the legal profession is not an inclusive place, there is a huge amount of work to be done to achieve fairness, retain and promote talent and enable provision of legal services that diverse consumers need and deserve.
While there is no silver bullet, we heard inspiring talks, from both research and practice, about important actions that work.
From research we learned of activities which centre around talent management including:
- improving routes into the legal profession and work experience being more geographically accessible
- contextual recruitment, for example, looking at where a job applicant attained their A levels alongside the grade
- identifying what attributes and skills really make a good lawyer
- enabling individuals with the right talent to progress, for example through fair allocation of work which provides opportunities to excel and be noticed.
And actions that brought about results for a small to medium sized legal firm included:
- creation of a top-down inclusive culture
- development of pay parity
- provision of work experience to local university students and
- reverse mentoring.
By collaborating and sharing important ideas, we can develop further insight to inform our EDI objectives.
Legal Service Board video: Reshaping Legal Services – views of legal services consumers and providers on diversity and inclusion, trust and ethics