Chief Operations Officer
Pettis Webber Pacific P.S.
Vancouver, WA US
Posted ago
Pettis Webber Pacific P.S.

We are looking for a Law Firm Administrator (also called a “Legal COO” and sometimes, “Legal Manager”) to work directly with the Law Firm Principals/Owners to oversee everything in the law firm, except the practice of law. This includes not only strategic planning, project management, and critical administrative and financial oversight, but also a key leadership role in shaping and sustaining firm culture.

We need Law Firm Administrator who is a PRO at workflow and project management, who deeply understands employee engagement, who is metrics-driven and KPI-obsessed, and who will be invested in making important contributions to the success of the Firm. 

We’re an established law firm with offices in Vancouver, Washington and we serve clients statewide in Washington State and Oregon. We need a full-blown bona fide professional Law Firm Administrator who has experience running an office and building a successful business. This is a position akin to an Executive Director, Director of Operations, Legal COO and Controller. 

We are NOT looking for an Office Manager or an Administrative Assistant. Do NOT apply if your only prior experience is as an Executive Assistant, Administrative Assistant, or Office Manager. 

The position encompasses a wide range of activities with involvement in all phases of administration, personnel, finances, facilities, and business systems. We need someone with the experience and maturity to work closely with the Owners and key staff on strategy, policy, problem-solving, and decision-making. This position will be responsible for planning, organizing, directing, and controlling the day-to-day operations of the Firm, and for directing the implementation of Firm policies. 

We are building a firm where systems run the business, and people run the systems. This position is responsible for improving both our people and our systems. 

Ideal applicants will have the Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities recommended by the Association of Legal Administrators. Prior legal experience is required. Knowledge of our areas of practice will be helpful. In all cases, you need to commit to getting yourself up to speed quickly because you will be expected to make sure cases and clients are getting the attention they need and that the staff is following the rules. 

Our Firm represents clients in their estate planning, trust planning of all levels, estate tax minimization strategy planning, asset preservation, long term care planning, special needs planning, as well estate administration needs. We have clients throughout the Northwest and some who live internationally and who work with Washington and Oregon estates. We have been very successful, and we have grown rapidly without the guidance of a professional administrator. We are proud of the firm we’ve built; we’ve done a lot of good, and we’ve gotten a lot of stuff right! But there is a lot of room for improvement and expertise. 

This is the first time we will be bringing in someone from the outside to help us manage and grow our firm. The right person for this position is someone we can develop trust in and who will trust in us. The right person for this position will be able to “manage up” to help us help you get your job done. 

This is an executive-level position with an executive compensation plan that includes a salary and incentives driven by performance towards KPIs. 

We do good work and take great satisfaction in helping others make plans for the future and protect their loved ones. We want to be profitable as well. We want to have a good life and we want to pursue our hopes and dreams and help you pursue yours. We also care about our work team and we are very dedicated to maintaining a positive and upbeat work environment. If this sounds like a law firm you want to work at and a job you can do, we very much look forward to talking with you soon. 

All applicants will go through a multi-phase interview process, starting with an initial conversation, a written interview, and at least one panel interview. 

Responsibilities

We care about skills and experience. We care just as much about your behaviors, habits, and attitudes…the right person for this role must:


  • Lead change - drive it and thrive in it
  • Talk more about the solution than the problem
  • Equally embrace both aspects of the “work/life balance”
  • Never hesitate to praise when deserved and correct when needed
  • Have thick skin and high empathy
  • Have keen conflict resolution skills (not conflict avoidance skills)

Qualifications

You must be able to show evidence of your prior success with:


  • Playing a role in management of teams of 15+ people and budgets of $10,000,000 or more
  • Systems management and process refinement to ensure matters are handed appropriately so that client needs are met, legal ethical requirements are met, and clients receive excellent service
  • Employee engagement and leadership, supervision, and termination
  • Measuring what matters and using common financial reports to make business decisions (budget variance, PL, cashflow forecast)
  • Managing vendors such as bookkeepers, accountants, and technology services

About Pettis Webber Pacific P.S.

We have a “magic statement” that communicates to others whom we help and how we help them: We help people live with dignity and assurance through the power of planning and by compassionately guiding their loved ones through the pain of illness and loss.


Our Firm’s primary values:

  • Love, Kindness, Integrity, Compassion, Gratitude, and Professional Excellence
  • To be the Northwest’s leading law firm that makes the aging and dying experience better through compassionate, professional legal excellence delivered with a heart of service and gratitude

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