Meet Yvette. Yvette works flexibly with Orbit, mostly through assignments with telecommunication clients.
Yvette’s working day is very structured. She starts her day by dropping her kids off at childcare and she’s generally at her desk by 9.15am. Like the in-house lawyers she works alongside, Yvette puts in a solid day’s work. Her partner picks up their kids in the afternoon, and Yvette makes sure she’s home in time to read them a bedtime story.
When she’s on an assignment, Yvette generally works three to four days a week. She normally works assignments that last for three to four months, and then moves to another client. She takes these rolling assignments throughout the year until she is ready to focus on other things. Yvette has recently chosen to take a one-month break to care for her kids and pursue some personal projects. Yvette’s experience is fairly typical of the combination of daily structure and broader flexibility that attracts many lawyers to Orbit.
There are other people, like Vanessa, who choose to work flexible hours as well as working flexible working years. Currently Vanessa is working from 10am to 6pm, four days a week on a three-month assignment with a manufacturing client’s legal team. She plans to take a month’s break at the end of her assignment so she can get a few more chapters of her book finished.
Many lawyers get real personal value from being able to work some days from home or being able to work flexible hours. Some people in permanent positions are also able to negotiate purchased annual leave, but many feel like they are compromising their career or inconveniencing co-workers by doing that.
One of the significant advantages of contract working with Orbit is that you have the option to work in blocks throughout the year. This allows you to take time off for your other priorities – whether they are school holidays, voluntary or community events, or annual travel pilgrimages. As a contract worker, you commit to a contract with a defined role and tenure. This means you can schedule your own year to meet your needs, without feeling like you are letting anyone down.
One of the other real up-sides of working as a contract lawyer is the opportunity to gain terrific experience across a range of clients in a relatively short time.
If you’re in-house, it generally takes a career move to gain experience in a different business. And while lawyers in private practice usually handle matters for a wide variety of clients, they have limited opportunities to learn about their clients’ businesses from the inside other than through secondments. Secondments are all about making the client happy, so secondees go where they are told and stay there for as long as they are told to do that.
An Orbit lawyer typically works in 2-3 businesses in a 12-month period. This means they quickly gain exposure to different businesses in diverse industries. In doing this, they retain control over those assignments and their career development path.
For lawyers in firms or in-house roles, working flexibly usually involves flexible hours or days, remote working or job-sharing. You can do all of that working as a contract lawyer, but you also have the opportunity to carve out a flexible year and a flexible career.
Many lawyers join Orbit at a particular stage in their careers specifically because they want the “flexible year”, potentially on top of flexible day-to-day working arrangements. The added bonus many of them don’t expect is how quickly they gain a wealth of knowledge from different business environments.
At Orbit, we think it just makes sense to create flexibility options at the time you most need them while investing in experience that creates future options for you too.
We have opportunities available for exceptional lawyers with 5+ PQE. You must be established as an ILP or sole practitioner, carry an unrestricted practising certificate and have PI insurance. Email or call Greg for a confidential conversation on how legal contracting can work for you.
National Talent Manager
Phone: +61 3 9672 3187