RRR Digital Treechange
About the Initiative
A lack of appropriately skilled lawyers necessarily impacts access to justice, particularly when conflicts of interest can limit the pool of lawyers available to act in a particular matter. This has resulted in Rural, Regional and Remote (RRR) residents being denied legal representation at critical junctures, such as bail applications. This issue can be addressed, in part, by designing effective policy responses to recruitment and succession deficits and difficulties in retaining staff.
The ‘Digital Treechange’ initiative aims to overcome the ‘barrier of the unknown’ for lawyers considering RRR practice (Candidate). Rather than having to relocate (with all the associated difficulties) before knowing much about the participating legal workplace (Participant), the work, the area and the lifestyle; the ‘Digital Treechange’ initiative provides for Candidates to work remotely for a Participant, for a defined trial period. This allows the Candidate to get a sense of the work and workplace prior to relocating and, conversely, gives the Participant an opportunity to trial the Candidate beforehand.
At the conclusion of the trial period, and if the Participant and Candidate are both willing to proceed, the Candidate would then be required to relocate to the Participant’s RRR workplace location. During the trial period the Candidate is also required visit the Participant’s workplace on-location for a short period, so that both parties can make fully informed decisions at the conclusion of the trial period.
The RRR Digital Treechange initiative is designed to be a model programme that, though Terms and Conditions and Guidelines:
- promote a consistency of quality and delivery; and
- reflect the ethics and values of the Law Council and its Constituent Bodies.
In this way it is envisaged that, over time, the RRR Digital Treechange will build a national branding and reputation as an effective solution to RRR recruitment, that is trusted by both employers and candidates. How this model programme is implemented is a matter for the participant, so long as the programme meets the specified minimum standards outlined in the Terms and Conditions.
In the pilot programme the Law Council’s model features two streams:
- A six week model; and
- A three month model.
Terms and Conditions
The Digital Treechange has been designed as a nationally recognised program that ensures a consistency of quality and delivery though its carefully formulated Terms and Conditions.
By requiring certain minimum standards, the Digital Treechange offers a model that candidates can have confidence in and, in this way, the RRR Digital Treechange will build a national branding and reputation as a reliable and effective solution to RRR recruitment for both employers and candidates.
Further, while the Digital Treechange promotes consistency and confidence through its Terms and Conditions, it is also designed to provide the necessary flexibility so that it may be adapted to the dynamic recruitment needs of participating workplaces.
To this end, the Law Council has produced the Guidelines to assist legal workplaces in their implementation and adaption of this initiative to their specific recruitment needs.
Download the Terms and Conditions here.
The Law Council has developed the Guidelines to assist legal workplaces in their implementation and adaption of Digital Treechange model initiative to their specific recruitment needs.
The Guidelines also assist legal workplaces considering how to use the Digital Treechange programme, including ways to customise the model to make the workplace more attractive and/or competitive for candidates.
Download the Guidelines here.
For more guidance materials and tools for practitioners and law practices considering the Digital Treechange initiative, please see here.
Want to participate in the RRR Digital Treechange?
Firms can sign up here.
Download the information pack here.
Candidates considering a RRR Digital Treechange should contact their preferred firms and workplaces directly.
For all enquiries about the RRR Digital Treechnage, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.