Inclusion and diversity

At Hall & Wilcox diversity and inclusion are vital components of our practice of Smarter Law and our ambition to be a pre-eminent law firm.

We are committed to creating and maintaining a diverse and inclusive workforce that reflects our people, our clients and our community.

Our inclusive culture enables us to recognise and celebrate the characteristics that make each individual different and create a workplace environment in which both individuals and groups feel welcome, respected and valued.

Focus on these areas helps us to support and empower our people to bring their whole selves to work and to achieve their greatest potential.

This supports us attracting, retaining and engaging the best talent and leveraging the diversity offered by our people to build stronger relationships and deliver Smarter Law to our clients.

We have four areas of focus that help us achieve our inclusive culture:

Flexibility

The firm recognises that flexible and agile working can support us in our professional, personal and family life, health and wellbeing.

By definition, flexibility suggests that there is no ‘one size fits all’ approach and so we are committed to offering genuine flexible working arrangements that balance flexibility for employees with the commercial needs of the firm and our clients.

Flexible working is accepted as a normal part of our workplace and this focus gives us different ways of thinking, acting and adapting to client needs.

Gender

Our focus on gender diversity is about empowering all of our people by actively addressing barriers to gender equality to create an inclusive culture for both men and women. The firm is committed to supporting the progression of women into partnership and senior management roles, ensuring representation at board level, and eliminating unconscious bias in graduate recruitment.

We recognise that we have a role in advocating for gender equality within the legal profession and for women in the law. We create ways to connect, share and engage with industry peers, our people and our clients to cultivate a diverse network with mutual support and collective success.

Diversity of thinking

Smarter Law is central to the way we do business. We understand that the business of law is being disrupted and to remain competitive we need to continue to innovate and do things better.

The firm recognises the diversity of our people and looks to celebrate the characteristics that make each individual different. People with diverse backgrounds perceive the world and approach challenges differently. This diverse thinking leads to better, innovative legal solutions and business outcomes for our clients.

LGBTIQ+

Diversity and LGBTIQ+ inclusion are supported at all levels within the firm. We foster a culture of LGBTIQ+ acceptance within the workplace and inclusion is central to our commitment to ensuring we provide support for our people to bring their whole selves to work.

We are the registered office of the Victorian Pride Centre Ltd (VPC), which we also provided with pro bono support to develop its unique initiative that ‘celebrates, bolsters and protects equality, diversity and inclusion’. This has allowed us to share our legal expertise and demonstrate our commitment to our own LGBTIQ+ community and clients.

Indigenous

We recognise the unique position of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in Australia’s culture and history, including as Australia’s first custodians of the land and waters. Part of building a more inclusive workplace future for all Australians is ensuring our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have opportunities to prosper and grow their careers.

Some of the ways we support workplace career pathways and inclusion is by participating in:

  • WorkSafe Victoria Indigenous Law Scholarship program
  • Gawamga Jina Indigenous Careers Academy, where students are introduced to career paths that they may not have previously considered, and
  • Yalari, a charity that supports young indigenous kids from regional and remote areas around Australia to be offered secondary education scholarships at leading boarding schools.

Our purpose is to enable our clients, our people and our communities to thrive and our pro bono and sponsorship commitments help us to achieve that purpose.  We are involved in a diverse range of activities that reflect and represent our Hallmarks and we work to leverage and share our resources and legal expertise.  Through partnering with organisations and events, we aim to facilitate meaningful engagement opportunities for our clients, our people and our community.