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Joshua Rozenberg
Tuesday 22nd September 2009
It's the future, but not as we know it

"Securing cost efficiencies, exploiting synergies and rolling out change, your focus will be on providing an [sic] holistic integrated function that's tightly aligned to the firm's strategy."

Time was when you needed to be a lawyer to work in a law firm. But not any more, judging by the advertisement in today's Times from which I have quoted this extract. Beachcroft is looking for a chief operating officer who can "affect the change" -- they presumably mean "effect" -- "that will help the business continue to succeed and grow".

Clearly, the ability to write simple English is no longer valued at Beachcroft. But the firm is well aware that the Legal Services Act 2007 will change the way that law firms operate (although it's a little confused about when the Act will be "introduced").

Beachcroft tells us it has a budget of more than £10 million for a support-services team of more than 300 people. If law firms don't start recruiting mangers who can understand this sort of jargon now, they'll soon find these services provided more effectively by people who do -- and a 247-year-old solicitors' practice will be nothing more than a holistic synergy.

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About Joshua Rozenberg

Joshua Rozenberg is an independent legal commentator who presents Law in Action on BBC Radio 4.

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