Varnum is a growing Michigan-based firm with eight offices and over 180 attorneys. We are recognized by our firm members, clients and communities for responsive service, practical advice, quality work, and a team-oriented, entrepreneurial culture. Varnum seeks an Executive Director who welcomes the challenge of working with talented professionals to manage a successful operation with creativity and ingenuity.
The Executive Director is responsible for all business and non-legal aspects of the firm, focusing on short and long term operational issues as well as providing support for strategic planning, freeing firm management to focus on high-level managerial decisions, and developing new business. The successful Executive Director will understand the overall vision of the firm, while not losing sight of numerous operational issues that impact the firm's performance. The ideal candidate will operate comfortably across a spectrum of people and responsibilities, including financial, administrative, technology, facilities, human resources, marketing, and business development.
The Executive Director is based in Grand Rapids and reports to the Managing Partner(s) and Policy and Executive Committees.
ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
- Ensure policies/procedures, determined by the Policy and Executive Committees, are implemented, followed and monitored in all firm offices, making recommendations when need for innovation or improvement is observed.
- Overall responsibility for general administration, compliance, growth and special projects. Foster effective teamwork to address issues related to finance/accounting, human resources, technology, purchasing, systems/procedure changes and long-range planning.
- Attend Partnership, Policy and Executive Committee meetings; prepare minutes and supporting materials. Attend Practice Team and other committee meetings as requested. Under direction of Policy and Executive Committees, coordinate implementation of policies, procedures, and other initiatives to achieve strategic results.
- Serve as a business counselor by assisting the Policy Committee with overall strategic input, financial analysis and planning, including law firm mergers or acquisitions. Plan and assist in the successful onboarding and integration of new practices or firms.
- Oversee facilities: including involvement in management and negotiation of office leases, space planning, renovation or new construction build-out, maintenance of existing space, prepare analysis and feasibility studies of potential locations.
- Ensure all lawyers have appropriate level of staff, information technology and other support to develop and enhance the efficient and effective practices of the firm. Regularly travel to regional offices to develop relationships and better understand unique qualities of each office location.
- Foster the effective teamwork of direct reports (Directors of HR, Marketing, IT, Finance, Recruiting and Professional Development, among others); encourage best practices and process improvement. Oversee outsourced functions, if any.
- Ensure firm management is equipped with resources necessary to support all strategic and operating functions.
- Collaborate with Finance Director to develop and present comprehensive, timely financial analysis/reports for firm leadership. Create metrics that reflect achievement of firm goals.
- Monitor national and regional legal trends; advising firm leadership of their significance and impact on the firm.
- Represent the firm in the legal administration community, as appropriate.
- Establish/maintain good working relationships and decision making practices, collaborating with different levels of firm personnel and diverse groups of people; understanding and building on the firm's history and culture.
- Strong administrative, management and leadership skills. Capable of working with limited direction, providing leadership and strategic guidance to others.
- Demonstrated ability to rapidly analyze issues, anticipate consequences, make decisions and initiate action.
- Excellent oral and written skills to communicate complex information and ideas tactfully and effectively to personnel at all levels of the firm, sometimes under pressure in the presence of strongly-held opposing viewpoints.
- Strong interpersonal skills to create a firm-minded atmosphere of mutual respect, trust, openness, and encourage resourcefulness.
- Solid understanding of the importance of client relationships and the need for consistent and excellent client service, ensuring operational and technological support.
- Highly organized, with keen attention to detail, and self-directed in work approach.
- Knowledgeable and conversant in current technology and applications.
QUALIFICATIONS AND REQUIREMENTS
Bachelor's degree in a related field; Master's or MBA degree preferred.
Minimum 7 to 10 years of progressive management experience in a professional service organization; law firm experience preferred. Background in accounting, operations management, human resources and IT strongly desired.
Varnum offers an excellent compensation and benefit package with an inclusive culture and a professional work environment. Salary commensurate with experience and position responsibilities.
ABOUT GRAND RAPIDS
Located 45 minutes from Lake Michigan beaches and blueberry farms, Grand Rapids is a thriving big city, with a small city feel. Topping many lists, including "fastest growing economy" and "best place to raise a family", Grand Rapids is truly a scalable, inclusive community. Led by collaborative business and philanthropic partnerships, a history of design-oriented furniture makers, innovative medical and life sciences, coupled with strong entrepreneurial activity, Grand Rapids' diverse economy continues to grow. We are a city of neighborhoods, with strong faith communities and numerous private/public schools with a downtown that offers year-round cultural and sports attractions, as well as an iconic craft beer boom and foodie scene.
If you, or someone you know, has these qualifications and is looking for a challenging career, please send resume to: email@example.com.
We are now accepting applications for the 2019 Summer Associate Program. To apply, please click the following link: varnum.careers.micronapps.com
All applications must be received by Friday, August 3, 2018.
Receptionist & Hospitality Specialist (Grand Rapids)
Varnum LLP has a full-time opening for a Receptionist & Hospitality Specialist working Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m, in our Grand Rapids office. This position supports over 350 attorneys and staff members. It involves frequent and direct contact with clients, scheduling and setting up conference rooms, coordinating travel arrangements, working with vendors and providing general office support. The ideal candidate will be a polished professional who is responsible, flexible, takes initiative, can multi-task with ease and works well as part of a team.
Previous experience as a receptionist in a professional office setting, ability to use a multi-line phone system/switchboard, as well as strong skills in Microsoft Word, Excel, Outlook and Skype is preferred. Experience/education in hospitality industry is a plus. Varnum offers a professional environment with competitive compensation and benefits, including paid parking. Please send cover letter, resume and salary expectations to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Legal Secretary (Ann Arbor)
Varnum LLP has a full-time and part-time opening for a legal assistant in our Ann Arbor office. This position will support several attorneys and involve day to day administrative responsibilities as the office grows. The ideal candidate will have experience in a corporate/real estate practice, as well as estate planning with significant client interaction. We are seeking a resourceful, client service oriented professional with an appreciation for technology and top notch skills to deliver quality work. Please send cover letter, resume and salary expectations, indicating full or part time preference to email@example.com.
Legal Secretary (Novi)
Varnum LLP has an immediate full-time opening in our Novi office for a legal secretary with litigation and transactional experience. Demonstrated computer proficiency with MS Office and excellent typing, editing and proofreading skills are required. We are seeking a candidate who is extremely organized, with keen attention to detail and a superb commitment to client service, who can work independently as well as part of a team. We offer a professional work environment, and competitive compensation and benefits. Please send cover letter and resume to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Human Resources (Novi/Detroit/Ann Arbor)
Varnum LLP is seeking to add a Human Resources professional to our team. This mid-level position, located in SE Michigan, will support HR functions in our Novi, Detroit, and Ann Arbor offices under the supervision of the HR Director and in conjunction with the HR team based in Grand Rapids. Traveling regularly to our SE regional offices is required.
Primary responsibilities include:
- Recruiting: place advertisements, screen/interview candidates, conduct reference checks, draft offer letters, etc.
- Assist with onboarding/offboarding.
- Resolve issues of workflow and coverage.
- Resolve employee relations issues.
- Establish and maintain long-term working relationships with staff/attorneys to ensure employee satisfaction and retention.
- Exercise care and discretion with confidential and sensitive materials on issues.
- Assist with special projects, initiatives, firm events, and programs.
- Collaborate with other HR team members to balance workload as needed.
- Bachelor's degree, preferably in Human Resources or related field.
- A minimum of 5 years of relevant experience is required, preferably in a legal or professional office environment.
- Knowledgeable about HR policies and laws.
- Proficient in MS Office Suite.
- Excellent written and oral communication skills with strong interpersonal skills and the ability to remain poised in difficult situations.
- Ability to work independently with multiple projects and priorities simultaneously.
- Client service-oriented team player.
- Strategic thinking and active-listening skills.
- Ability to identify issues, develop recommendations and implement solutions.
Varnum LLP offers a professional environment with a competitive compensation and benefit program. Please send cover letter, resume and salary expectations to email@example.com.
Read more about what it's like to work at Varnum in Detroit Lawyer magazine >
- June 21, 2018
- June 14, 2018
- June 7, 2018