The blue-chip Am Law one hundred firms this month rolled out a firmwide concierge service, dubbed “Kirkland Concierge,” giving lawyers and senior body of workers get entry to to a collection of on-call assistants who can help with (nearly) every personal task or errand a busy lawyer may want to think of. The company’s alumni—any legal professional who worked on the company extra than three months— may also have to get entry to to a pared-down version of the concierge carrier starting next year.
Could the service unfastened up greater time for work as an awful lot because it creates greater free time? Sure, but the firm says the goal is to make Kirkland & Ellis a more appealing place of business via letting its human beings awareness on things they want to do, instead of on pesky non-public obligations.
“It’s not to offer a service to human beings can work all the time,” stated Chiara Wrocinski, the company’s senior director of criminal recruiting and development. “It’s to offer a carrier that will complement and decorate the lives of our attorneys and give them a possibility to spend their very treasured downtime on what they want to do.”
Wrocinski stated the program turned into borne, in element, from her own frustration with juggling the demands of final 12 months’ holiday season with her personal work. Planning events, shopping for gifts and giving displays for paintings caused a moment of reflection after her husband counseled she end her job. She didn’t need to cease; she simply didn’t have time for the vacation grind.
“It became in that second in which I had this consciousness that I’m crushed, however, it’s no longer my paintings that are overwhelming me, it’s this private stuff that is distracting me,” Wrocinski said. “And that is likely how our lawyers are feeling at instances, so why now not solve for that?”
The firm’s research confirmed that only three percent of groups provide concierge offerings, however, 30 percent of employers that make “quality area to paintings” lists provide some model of the perk.
Such offerings range from call facilities to handle reservations or online purchases to expert personnel that cater completely to C-suite executives. The firm opted for a mixture of both, supplied in element through a concierge company referred to as Circles. Kirkland lawyers now have get admission to to a call (and electronic mail) center in addition to having complete-time concierge body of workers on-site at its places of work. The service is unfastened except for off-hour requests that require a concierge group of workers member. Personal purchases made via the carrier are also paid for by means of the lawyers and body of workers, no longer the firm.
The firm has additionally educated the concierge group of workers about what exclusive legal professionals’ jobs entail, so they apprehend the needs of a financial ruin or an ordeal. The concierge service also received training on a way to respond to legal professionals: Brevity is key. They are asked to provide specific answers to questions with bullet factors.
So a long way, the company says approximately 20 percent of its eligible employees have used the service in some way. The use is break up pretty evenly among men and women, Wrocinski said, but associates have made extra requests than partners. Associates are usually seeking out help with family or personal errands even as partners are much more likely to ebook non-public travel or entertainment.
One early service the concierge supplied changed into to assist a legal professional plan to transport out of her house. The legal professional, whom the firm declined to name, had a closing on the sale of her house scheduled in weeks while she becomes requested to be in Europe for a piece count. That’s while the concierge service took over.
“The making plans and organization stored everything on track and I recognize your responsiveness at some point of this very traumatic period,” the lawyer wrote to the concierge company, in step with Wrocinski. “Thank you for everything. It was a pride working with you.”
Wrocinski said the firm had no longer identified different large law firms that supplied a comparable level of service. She stated the company is hoping the carrier is regarded as an advantage in its efforts to recruit young legal professionals.
Kirkland has recently confronted some pushback on that front. A group of Harvard Law School students has been petitioning the company this week to drop a forced arbitration settlement from an employment agreement that a group referred to as the Pipeline Parity Project posted. A company spokeswoman declined to comment.
“Our goal is to create an environment where they’re going to the high-quality area to work,” Wrocinski stated. “This isn’t a Band-Aid to a grueling bleed. This is because we want you to come back right here. We want you to have the quality possibilities to examine; to be mentored; and to spend time with clients. And then we need you to head home and experience energized and need to return again right here the following day.”