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Re:link – Reflections from a fast-paced first quarter in the contract lawyer market

We are celebrating the first quarter of activity for Re:link, Linklaters’ new contract lawyer platform that launched in the UK earlier this year. Reflecting on the last 3+ months leading this impressive team, Mark Higgs (Re:link COO) here shares some new perspectives on an unusual market and why Re:link is so well-placed to succeed.

1. Re:link has exceeded expectations

In launching a new service there is inevitably uncertainty about how it will be received. With Re:link, we had all the fundamentals in place – an established market, a differentiated proposition, backing from a leading brand in the UK legal industry and rigorous preparation. But would that translate into engagement from lawyers and clients? The answer, after just one quarter, has been a resounding yes. Lawyer numbers are nearly 2x of our stretch target, with fantastic depth and breadth of expertise, and clients have been unanimous in welcoming Linklaters to the market. Re:link lawyers are already working with clients across multiple sectors, which after such a short period of activity is testament to the commitment of everyone involved. With a host of plans already in the works to evolve the platform on multiple fronts, this is a really exciting time to be part of Re:link.

2. Linklaters stands tall

As a relative newcomer to Linklaters, I remain impressed by the depth of commitment from the firm to the Re:link platform. The striking investment of ideas, capital, relationships, insights and above all time that characterised the planning for Re:link, from Linklaters legal teams and business teams alike, has continued apace through the platform’s launch phase.

3. Be lucky - the right team makes all the difference

In a people business, you need the right… people. Fortunately for anyone involved with Re:link, through Jenni, Martin, Desi and their respective teams we have that in abundance. At remarkably short notice we have built a team steeped in Linklaters’ culture, with broad market expertise and a personal touch that will stand Re:link in great stead for the years to come. With further backing from the array of talented individuals working across Linklaters, and from the fast-growing Re:link lawyer community, this is already a formidable group.

4. Re:link is differentiated

Joining an established market increases the importance of articulating clear points of differentiation. Re:link’s continuing focus on its headlines has really captured the attention of both lawyers and clients:

5. Lawyers lead varied and inspiring lives

We already see great diversity of backgrounds and interests among the lawyers at Linklaters. The power of the Re:link model is that it affords lawyers a level of control over their career that can further enable the pursuit of other activities. The Re:link lawyer community includes a far-reaching mix of profiles, including lawyers with elected posts, roles in the judiciary, esoteric hobbies, involvement in the arts and other business interests but also many lawyers for whom being a contract lawyer simply strikes the right working balance. This is a sneak preview of a future post, where we will talk with some of our Re:link lawyers and showcase their experiences in more detail.

6. The legal market has stolen a march

The Re:link model is a really powerful concept, but it has few parallels outside the legal industry. Sophisticated clients, talented contract lawyers and a market-leading firm all benefit hugely from a tripartite structure that other providers can’t replicate. This may well be driven by the unusual combination in legal of:

Nonetheless there seems to be much that other sectors, particularly those linked to professional services, could learn from the experience of Re:link and others in the contract lawyer market.

If you are interested in becoming a Re:link lawyer, please contact Jenni Cozens or visit our online application. If you would like to discuss working with Re:link lawyers, please contact Desi Konstantinova.

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