By: 21 October 2015
Lack of flexibility tempering female lawyers’ aspirations

Flexibility and work life balance concerns are turning a third of all female lawyers off the idea of partnership, according to research carried out by Douglas Scott Legal Recruitment.

The recruiter has said that 37% of all female lawyers had no partner level ambition, with 38% of them citing flexibility and work-life balance concerns as their reasons for lower career expectations. 31% of them cited the stress associated with partnership as the main reason they would not be looking to climb the ladder.

Employers could also be doing more to retain ambitious female legal professionals as only 21% of those who aspired to partnership firmly believed they would achieve that with their current firm. The perception of a glass ceiling however seems to be less relevant in the modern legal profession – only 5 % of all women lawyers cited this as the main reason they did not want to make partnership.

Kathryn Riley, the managing director at Douglas Scott Legal Recruitment said: “Two thirds of the female lawyers who have turned their back on the prospect of partnership have done so because of the stress and lack of flexibility at the top level of the legal profession. It’s not an issue that is unique to the legal sector but the bottom line is a lot of talented people are slipping through the net.”

Douglas Scott gathered in data from nearly 2,000 survey respondents and crunched through £166 million of remuneration data when producing their 2015 Salary and Benefits Benchmarker, which is available to download from their website.