lambeau

non-law position in the interim after articling

19 posts in this topic

I have been approached with a position for an early resolutions officer with the ombudsman.  i finish articling in 2 weeks and have not secured an associate position.  I am considering it in the interim...but am worried it is a step back and may be to my detriment. 

 

Any advice? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

that was my take on it 

 

the role also invovles transferrable skills such as legal research, case analysis, client intakes, etc., it also would give me exposure to public law and possibly create further opportunities for me in my legal career. 

 

i thought it was a good opportunity until a colleague at my firm strongly advised against it.  which is why i thought to canvas others opinions. 

 

 

the "paying rent" problem is very real for me..unforunately i am not in a financial position to freeload for an indefinite period of time before finding a position. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

that was my take on it 

 

the role also invovles transferrable skills such as legal research, case analysis, client intakes, etc., it also would give me exposure to public law and possibly create further opportunities for me in my legal career. 

 

i thought it was a good opportunity until a colleague at my firm strongly advised against it.  which is why i thought to canvas others opinions. 

 

 

the "paying rent" problem is very real for me..unforunately i am not in a financial position to freeload for an indefinite period of time before finding a position.

 

By colleague do you mean fellow articling student or someone with experience to back up their opinion, and did they explain why?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

partner at the firm 

 

he basically said it wasnt a good idea because it was a step back. 

 

so "experience" as in been in the field for a while

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Your options are to have work and get paid while you look for an associate position, or to be unemployed while you look, correct?

 

I know which one looks better to me.

5 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

partner at the firm 

 

he basically said it wasnt a good idea because it was a step back. 

 

so "experience" as in been in the field for a while

 

I think there is a difference between working somewhere temporarily and working somewhere for a couple of years.

 

 

The only way to have a "step forward" in your case is to get an associate position.

2 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Your options are to have work and get paid while you look for an associate position, or to be unemployed while you look, correct?

 

I know which one looks better to me.

 

This is exactly what it comes down to.

 

If you are super paranoid and think it "looks bad" (which it doesn't....) then just take the job and leave it off your resume. But definitely keep those cheques coming in.

Edited by happydude
3 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

partner at the firm 

 

he basically said it wasnt a good idea because it was a step back. 

 

so "experience" as in been in the field for a while

This seems so bizarre to me. How on earth could working for the Ombudsman be a step back? If anything, this may open doors for you (networking, experience, etc.).

3 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the feedback everyone ! I tend to agree. Just wanted some outside perspective. I articled in family law which i ultimately would like to pursue but i figure some exposure to public law may actually broaden my job search. So i think i am going to see it through !

5 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The only concern I'd have relates to the ombudsman's expectations - you might burn a bridge if you start there and then leave for an associate position a week or two later. It's a small world and you've gotta do what you can to protect your reputation. However, if they're aware of your search, or it's a shorter-term arrangement, I think it's great! Congrats!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can tell you that the ombudsman has an extremely high turnover for it's EROs. You won't be burning any significant bridges. Without saying too much, I know of a couple of people who have worked as EROs for the ombuds and left soon after for lawyer positions. 

 

From what I hear though, the ombudsman isn't a bad place to work overall. You may actually end up enjoying it.

Edited by AlmostThere
1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The only concern I'd have relates to the ombudsman's expectations - you might burn a bridge if you start there and then leave for an associate position a week or two later. It's a small world and you've gotta do what you can to protect your reputation. However, if they're aware of your search, or it's a shorter-term arrangement, I think it's great! Congrats!

 

I must be in the minority, because I always see advice like this on this board, and often I am in the "don't care what they think" camp (within reason...).

 

If you take a non-law job, and they can clearly see from your CV that you are a law student that just completed articling and was not hired back, and then you bail shortly after for an associate position.... well.... they should have seen that possibility coming and factored it into their decision making matrix when they hired you. If they didn't, that's their problem for not exercising due diligence. If they want to hold it against you that you pursued the career you trained for that's their problem and, frankly, isn't very reasonable. In a professional market place people will move around for what they perceive are "better" opportunities. 

 

Of course, don't flat out lie to them in the interview if they ask about your intentions and say you are in the for the long haul etc. That would be bad and would indeed reflect poorly on your reputation and character. But at some point, you have to look our for #1. When people are so concerned about "burning bridges" they are hesitant to take job offers that will give their career sure boosts I have to shake my head. Do you think a firm would ever hesitate to can an associate if that was clearly the right move for them? Exactly. As long as you are professional and respectful in the process, make the right move for yourself. I'm sure OP couldn't care less about his "reputation" at the ombudsman if he is making 100k at a firm he loves, doing awesome work, where everyone thinks he is great and a valuable asset.

 

EDIT: tl;dr - as long as you are always professional and respectful there should be no hard feelings leaving for an associate position if the employer is reasonable; employers (firms) will look out for themselves first and would be foolish to expect employees (associates) will not do the same

Edited by happydude

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@happydude, I think you might want to reread komodo's post, where it's clearly indicated that the possibility of burning a bridge is certainly there if you leave shortly after being hired. It was stipulated that if they are aware of the search or it's a short term arrangement, then that would be fine. It's very true that the legal community is a small one and taking a job under less than honest pretenses is unwise in many cases. Reasonable or not, in some cases an employer is unlikely to be happy in this hypothetical example. As for a firm not hesitating to 'can' an associate, well, that's a different scenario, unless the firm is somehow lying to the associate about the actual hire and 'cans' them a couple of weeks later. Not an appropriate analogy, in my opinion.

 

Of course, it's wise to examine what is best for you, individually, but if you go through your career only looking out for #1, you're likely to be in for some problems.

 

To the OP, I don't see that as a step backward and I would doubt that it would necessarily be a detriment. I do disagree with leaving it off your resume, though. That, I believe, would be a mistake.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just wanted to follow up and see if you accepted the position. I was recently recruited as an ERO for the Ombudsman and wanted to know your thoughts re work environment, culture, upward mobility, etc. I also articled in family law and find myself still looking for an associate position. I haven't had any luck and am strongly considering the ombudsman. OP, any advice?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I too am considering the ERO position with Ombudsman Ontario. If any of you recent recruits can shed some light on the recruitment process, please PM me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

IS anyone currently still working or going to work for Ombudsman? I need some questions answered. I prefer private Pming. Let me know please thank you so much!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I applied to work there many times and never got an interview. If anyone has any advice, Id appreciate it. Feel free to PM me. 

Edited by NewAccount2012

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.