Consultant Solicitor William Brown describes how Setfords offers the ‘recipe for success’ for lawyers

Traditional law firms are clearly no longer fit for purpose. With outdated cultures, a total lack of flexibility, and earnings structures that are too rigid, lawyers have little time to enjoy life.

At Setfords, we offer the solution. Our consultancy model puts lawyers in the driving seat, so they can design a career that genuinely works for them.

William Brown is one of these lawyers. Specialising in residential property, he joined Setfords during lockdown in 2020 and hasn’t looked back.

A new culture

When deciding whether to take the leap to consultancy, many lawyers worry about moving to a new firm with a different setup. Of course, it’s only natural to have some nerves, but at Setfords, we work hard to make everyone feel welcome and comfortable from the start.

This is something that William noticed straightaway.

“Even if you’ve done it before, just going somewhere new, there’s always butterflies in your tummy. But at Setfords, they make you feel settled, relaxed, and like you can ask any questions, and no question is silly. And, they make you feel special. That really stuck with me. I immediately felt at home at Setfords, and that was important to me.

The directors come across as very affable people. I feel that the directors at Setfords have that, and they always have the welfare of the staff and the consultants at the forefront of their minds. It’s a recipe for success, and Setfords has got that in abundance.”

We aim to reflect this warm feeling throughout the firm’s culture. At Setfords, our culture is significant. We know that consultancy is a new way of working for many of our lawyers, but even if it’s not, it’s still important to feel part of something bigger. We aim for a culture that is friendly, inclusive, and non-competitive – often the opposite of what’s found at traditional firms. On our culture, William notes:

“It feels like no one is competing with anybody. Everybody wants to help you, and everybody is approachable. That seems to be the culture of Setfords, right from the top. It’s all about ‘what can we do to make life easy for you so that you can just get on with what you do?'”

That’s exactly what we aim to do with our unique way of working: give our lawyers everything they need so they only need to focus on what they do best, every single day.

Fair and lucrative earnings

Of course, it’s not all about the culture. Many lawyers are attracted to the Setfords consultancy model because of the potential for higher earnings. Our fee share structure allows solicitors to earn up to 80% of their billings, with all the support they need available for nothing extra. William says:

“In a traditional setup, you’ve got to bill maybe three times your salary, and you only get a fraction of that amount. At Setfords, you have the opportunity to get at least 50%. It’s not rocket science, is it? You’ve just got to go for it.”

As William says, even on the first rung of our fee-share structure, lawyers take home half of their billings. This percentage rises as you bill more, up to 80% – a percentage far exceeding the earning potential at any traditional law firm. And, with our industry-leading support teams behind you to help you reach those next levels, what have you got to lose?

A sense of freedom

For many, the most significant benefit of consultancy for most of our lawyers is the freedom it gives them to fit work around their life. William says:

“It’s the freedom to work my own hours, work when I want to work, and take on the clients I want without having any targets. It’s an amazing feeling.”

William has been working as a consultant since 2012, but it is new for many of our other lawyers. However, they soon reap the benefits of freedom and flexibility, no matter what that looks like to them. For some, it’s the ability to work different hours to fit around their clients’ needs. Others enjoy hobbies they wouldn’t have had time for in a traditional firm. For many, it’s the chance to spend more quality time with their family, which is exactly what William has found. He says:

“The work-life balance is great. In a traditional law firm, you might earn some decent money. But you’re there Monday to Friday, and you’ve got that journey into work and journey back. So you’ve only got your weekends. With consultancy, you don’t have to wait till the weekend. It’s awesome.

It makes it worth waking up at 5:30 in the morning. I can get a couple of hours of work in before the kids wake up. Once they’re up, we can have breakfast together and do the school run; I’ve always wanted to do that. In the afternoon, I pick up the kids, spend an hour with them, then get back to work before putting them to bed. More time with the family: I can’t sell it better than that.”

We encourage our consultant solicitors to embrace the flexibility Setfords offers so that they can spend time on what’s important to them outside of work. This makes for happier lawyers who are more present in their personal lives and productive at work.

If you think consultancy could be right for you, please get in touch today.

Is consultancy for me?

If you want to find out more about becoming a consultant with us, get in touch. We are happy to conduct interviews remotely for suitable, UK-qualified candidates with five or more years’ experience. If you’re a good fit, you’ll be joining a team that was created for lawyers to do their best work.

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        Currently, we can only work with lawyers qualified under one of these regulatory bodies