Testing Legal Assistant Skills and Personality Traits

Overview of the position

The role of a legal assistant in a law firm or agency requires the mastery of many skills to provide administrative support to lawyers and paralegals. Finding the right one can be a real value add to any company, increasing the efficiency, client communication and service, and accuracy of record organization and management.

Testing legal assistant skills will help you find the right person for this all-important position. It takes more than a single test to measure legal assistant skills and the potential of your candidates. Here are the most important skills, abilities and qualities - and the best ways to measure them among job applicants.

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Key skills and abilities

While looking for legal assistants or paralegals, the most used and valuable skills include:

  • Writing, grammar and proofreading
  • Good verbal communication
  • Listening skills and empathy
  • Organization and coordination
  • Detail-orientation and accuracy
  • Mastery of key software application

What are the qualities of an effective legal assistant?

A great hire has skills and abilities but their qualities and personality are just as important. Testing for legal assistant skills should also include testing for personality and aptitudes.

Good legal assistants enjoy working with other people and work to develop and maintain strong relationships. They are adaptable and flexible, able to handle changing priorities and deadlines that move up without warning. They must also have high integrity and be trustworthy in order to handle issues with discretion. They should also have a desire to learn, research, make connections and solve problems.

What are the qualities of a legal assistant?

Which tests can you use to assess legal assistant skills and traits?

Several Hire Success® evaluations are helpful for testing for paralegal skills and legal assistants. Used in combination, the results will give you a strong understanding of the abilities and potential of your candidates.

Does a candidate have the right mentality for the role? When testing for legal assistant skills, include a personality test for insight into motivations, attitudes, and behaviors. Can a person work independently or do they need lots of supervision? Do they enjoy figuring things out? Do they care about details? And how do they interact with challenging people and problems?

Because law relies so heavily on the written word, the ability to understand, remember, analyze and apply what is read is of paramount importance. Testing for paralegal skills prioritizes reading, as does testing for legal assistants.

Law and logic are intrinsically linked. Precision in details and coherence of thought are necessary in legal reasoning. When testing for paralegal skills and when identifying good legal assistant candidates, you can benefit from a logic test that assesses candidate ability to use logic and to spot flaws in logic.

Your best candidates need a firm grasp of math and English to avoid simple errors that could embarrass or prove costly to your firm. A pre-employment basic academic combination assessment will give you insight into which candidates have the skills you need.

How to test for a legal assistant or a paralegal position

The best way to implement testing legal assistant skills is to create a suite of assessments and consistently administer them to every qualified candidate. Giving the same tests in the same way ensures that you can compare candidates fairly. Using tests early in the hiring process will save you time by eliminating those who are clearly unqualified before you invest in further interviews.

You can use the tests we recommend or try the Hire Success® auto-baseline builder to develop an ideal candidate profile and then use the Hire Success® Custom Test Builder to create a suite of tests that match your hiring needs.

Risks you can avoid by assessing legal assistants before hiring

Legal assistants play a crucial role across many aspects of your firm. Testing can help you find the right candidates and avoid costly mistakes like:

  • Lacking adequate grasp of legal knowledge, principles, and terminology
  • Disclosing confidential information
  • Failing to multitask under pressure
  • Missing deadlines
  • Not keeping the team informed
  • Losing important documents
  • Making mistakes in accounting and billing
Risks you can avoid by assessing legal assistants before hiring.
Hire a legal assistant that fits your needs.

Hire a legal assistant that supports your firm's needs

We are here to help you with the best ways of assessing legal assistant skills and personality traits. You can "test our tests" with a comprehensive demo and then try our tests for free. You'll then have a good idea of what works for you and what you will need. Contact us to request a customized quote from Hire Success®.

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