Professional Legal Administrator (PLA)
Carolina Family Estate Planning
Cary, NC US
Posted ago
Carolina Family Estate Planning

Do you have a track record of accelerating firm growth, year after year?

Do you enjoy the fast pace of a small- to mid-sized firm?

Do you have a passion for building all-star teams?

Do you want to work hand-in-hand with a firm's owners and taking their vision to the next level?

We are one of the fastest-growing law firms in North Carolina. We help people live better lives by planning for secure futures, providing estate planning, elder law, and estate administration services. Our mission depends on taking care of our staff so they can take care of our clients.

We are seeking a full-time Professional Legal Administrator (PLA) who will help us grow to the next level and beyond. This is a director-level position, not an administrative or clerical role within the firm. As the most senior non-legal team member, the PLA will be THE key point of leadership for all staff and work closely with the Owners on firm-wide strategy, building an all-star team, and building systems. The PLA will be involved in all phases of administration, HR, finances, facilities, IT, and security, and will be responsible for planning, organizing, and directing the Firm's day-to-day operations.

An ideal candidate has 10+ years of experience as a PLA or in a COO-level role and has experience helping startup-level enterprises navigate the complexities of rapid growth (10x the industry average). Relocation to Cary, NC is required.



  • Determine attorney and non-attorney hiring needs. Recruit, evaluate, and hire new team members. 
  • Orient, train, and supervise all staff, including attorneys and paralegals. 
  • Evaluate staff on defined Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and make recommendations to Owners regarding work assignments, compensation, and discipline. 
  • Implement and enforce the Firm's employment policies. 
  • Coordinate staff schedules and supervise administration of the Firm's payroll and benefits programs. 

System Development and Refinement

  • Create, implement, and maintain the Firm's policies, systems, and procedures (PSPs). 
  • Work with Owners to develop and implement appropriate KPIs for each role. 
  • Train staff on all PSPs, linking compliance to KPIs and performance reviews. 
  • Measure, monitor, and report KPIs. 
  • Identify and implement opportunities to improve efficiency and effectiveness. 
  • Create an internal audit system to alert management of PSP violations, so they can be corrected before developing into bigger problems for the Firm and its clients. 
  • Refine and maintain the Firm's IT infrastructure to maximize efficiency. 

Facilities Management

  • Liaison with IT, professional service, and other vendors to ensure staff is supported and back-end operations run smoothly. 
  • Approve office equipment and supply purchases. 
  • Implement and train staff on emergency protocols. 

Financial Management

  • Work with the Owners to plan, and then oversee implementation of annual operations and marketing budgets. 
  • Collaborate with Owners to improve financial controls and analyze key financial reports to identify opportunities to improve operations. 
  • Supervise the bookkeeper on general ledger and trust accounting. 
  • Manage the Firm's billing functions to ensure completed work gets billed and fees are collected in a timely and appropriate manner. 

Sales Marketing Management

  • Collaborate with the Owners on the Firm's Business Plan and Marketing Plan. 
  • Help improve the Firm's sales and marketing departments to grow top-line revenue. 
  • Assist the Owners with sales marketing activities. 
  • Manage the Firm's relationships with current clients, former clients, and outside referral sources.


  • PLA will have graduated from a recognized college or university with major course work in business administration or management, finance, HR, IT or marketing, or comparable work experience. 
  • Professional certifications like the Certified Legal Manager (CLM) designation are preferred. 


  • The PLA must have previous knowledge of legal or other professional service organizations and have significant experience managing business operations such as HR, IT, facilities, finance, and marketing. 
  • Experience in HR, process development, and budgeting and planning is of the highest importance. 
  • An ideal candidate will have 10+ years' experience as a COO or PLA, managing operations for law firms with fewer than 5 full-time attorneys, as well as firms with more than 20 full-time attorneys. 

Skills and Abilities

  • You can confidently manage staff and delegate as necessary, maintaining good interpersonal relations and communications with lawyers and support staff, and helping to safeguard and cultivate the firm's corporate culture. 
  • Ability to evaluate metrics and draw insightful conclusions. 
  • You possess the ability to plan, organize, schedule, and budget productively while keeping the big picture in clear view.
$80,000 - $120,000 yearly
About Carolina Family Estate Planning

Carolina Family Estate Planning, an established and growing Cary law firm with a team of 10, helps clients build better lives by planning for a more secure future through estate planning, asset protection planning, long-term care planning, and estate administration. The Alzheimer's Planning Center is a special division of the firm dedicated to helping individuals and families impacted by cognitive impairment live the best quality of life possible.

We have fantastic clients that are a pleasure to work with and we place heavy emphasis on working as a team to better assist our clients.

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