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Lawyers are back in demand

Lawyers are back in demand
The current trend on Russians legal labour market is that the revival is strengthening: the number of vacancies is increasing, candidates are more likely to consider new opportunities, and staff reductions are much less common. Wages have practically reached pre-crisis levels.
Whilst there are many candidates on the market, it is still a challenge to find the right person with sufficient experience and suitable, professional skills. Those candidates who fully satisfy the companys requirements are generally offered more attractive positions.
The fundamental requirements of an ideal candidate have not changed: employers require an employee with a diploma from a leading university, such as MGU, MGYUA, MGIMO, SPbGU, Considerable attention is paid to their knowledge of English (an additional foreign language is a plus), with excellent communication, presentation and analytical skills also being crucial.
The demand for lawyers who support companys economical activities is increasing in most industry sectors banks being the most active.
Candidates with experience in a new product launch are in greatest demand. Foreign banks are ready to hire a lawyer whose English is not perfect if he or she has practical experience in developing type agreements, client documentation, local statements, in changing type forms. A candidate with 5-7 years experience in this field could expect to earn 150 000 200 000 Rubles a month, - says Olga Demidova, manager of Antal Russias Legal Practice.
Companies in the pharmaceutical sector are now opening legal vacancies, whereas previously this would have been outsourced. The pending changes in legislation, regulating the work of pharmaceutical companies has resulted in a growing demand for legal professionals. Additionally, investment companies, FMCG and the Energy sectors show high demand for hiring in-house lawyers.
There is a growing need for specialists in contract law, corporate law, and collection of debts. Major foreign companies are searching for compliance lawyers who are responsible for the firms corporate standards observance.
Companies are ready to outbid each other to secure the services of a star candidate. According to Antal Laurence Simons experts, qualified lawyers compensation either is at the pre-crisis level or in some cases even higher.
Legal companiesLegal practices note an increase in the volume of deals, resulting in new vacancies for lawyers.
Companies are restoring staff levels which were seriously cut during the global downturn. Specialists in intellectual property, real estate, labour law and M&A are now back in demand. Employers are also seeking lawyers who have experience in the banking area and court practice, - comments Olga Bochkova, a Principal Consultant with Antal Laurence Simons.
On the whole though, law firms have found the going tough and although salary level in most have returned to pre-crisis levels, some practices have struggled and cut wages by up to 30%. Many legal companies are still not willing to increase salaries and pay significant bonuses to staff.
The labour markets revival undoubtedly influences candidates behaviour. They are becoming more inclined to consider job offers, with 20% of the lawyers who took part in Antal Laurens Simons survey saying that they are planning to change their employer within the next six months. Candidates are now taking more of a long term view and prefer to choose a company which may not offer a significant increase in compensation, but will ensure better and faster career progression, - says Olga Demidova. Survey results confirm Olgas opinion: 59% of lawyers expect salary increase of up to 30% when changing jobs.


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