16 Best Non-Legal Jobs for Lawyers

By Indeed Editorial Team

Updated February 22, 2021 | Published March 20, 2020

Updated February 22, 2021

Published March 20, 2020

When you earn a law degree, you develop a number of valuable soft skills that can prepare you for a wide range of non-legal jobs in addition to those in the legal field. Learning about the many options available can inspire you to apply your legal education and training to another field or change careers after working in a legal role. In this article, we discuss the best non-legal jobs for lawyers and review average salaries and responsibilities for each.

What are the best non-legal jobs for lawyers?

Your legal background can provide key skills such as research, writing, interpersonal communication and critical thinking, all of which can be applied to a variety of jobs and industries. Here are 16 non-legal jobs that are ideal for lawyers:

1. Law professor

National Average Salary: $4,083 per month

Primary Duties: Law professors teach legal principles to college and university students. They develop syllabi, deliver lectures and lead classroom discussions. These academic professionals also administer exams, assign essays and calculate grades. Law professors advise students about academic goals and legal careers, and they may also publish papers in legal journals to advance their own careers.

2. Recruiter

National Average Salary: $55,807 per year

Primary Duties: Recruiters seek out candidates for job openings and lead applicants through the hiring process. They act as liaisons between candidates and potential employers. These professionals are responsible for screening candidates' resumes and qualifications, interviewing applicants for jobs and assisting with job offers. Lawyers' strong communication skills and understanding of employment law often makes them good candidates for this role.

Related: Learn About Being a Recruiter

3. Public relations manager

National Average Salary: $59,273 per year

Primary Duties: Public relations (PR) managers are responsible for maintaining an organization's image and reputation in collaboration with marketing and advertising colleagues. They write press releases to encourage media outlets to cover the company's news and facilitate relationships between company stakeholders and media figures. These professionals also handle negative press and develop plans for effectively managing PR crises. Lawyers gain strong critical thinking and problem-solving skills as well as interpersonal skills, which could benefit them in this role.

4. Mediator

National Average Salary: $62,704 per year

Primary Duties: Mediators help people and organizations negotiate disputes and reach resolutions. They may assist with divorces, business transactions, workers' compensation and other issues. Although they do not provide legal assistance, lawyers are likely to find that their legal backgrounds help them understand both sides of complex issues and negotiate mutually agreeable solutions.

Related: What Is a Mediator?

5. Director of education

National Average Salary: $65,627 per year

Primary Duties: Directors of education are administrators for academic organizations like schools and universities. They oversee staffing and hiring, develop and monitor budgets and administer instructional strategies. These administrators also build relationships with students' parents and the community, oversee student services and assist with alumni activities. Lawyers can use their legal backgrounds to handle administrative tasks like interpreting regulations and setting policies and procedures.

6. Financial advisor

National Average Salary: $67,172 per year

Primary Duties: Financial advisors provide budgeting and savings guidance to help clients make smart financial decisions. They work with clients to determine financial goals, and they help clients choose the most effective investments and retirement plans. These financial professionals also advise clients about taxes and insurance products. Lawyers with strong backgrounds in business and financial law may be good candidates for this role.

Related: Learn About Being a Financial Advisor

7. Training manager

National Average Salary: $67,283 per year

Primary Duties: Training managers create and administer employee development programs. They work with department managers to determine training and education needs and source relevant materials, such as webinars and workbooks. These professionals also administer new employee orientation sessions and provide basic training. Training managers also develop programs to ease employee transitions related to reorganizations or technological updates. Lawyers with keen research, organization, public speaking and interpersonal skills can excel in this role.

8. Marketing manager

National Average Salary: $67,768 per year

Primary Duties: Marketing managers oversee marketing strategy for organizations. They review industry trends, assess demand, research audiences and develop plans to market products and services. These professionals may specialize in television, radio, newspaper, magazine or digital marketing, or they may handle a wide range of channels. Marketing managers work closely with PR and advertising colleagues to do their jobs effectively. Lawyers can use their research and communication skills to perform well in this role.

Related: Learn About Being a Marketing Manager

9. Compliance officer

National Average Salary: $68,836 per year

Primary Duties: Compliance officers are responsible for making sure companies follow all applicable laws and regulations, which makes it a suitable choice for those with legal education or backgrounds. These professionals serve as experts on industry regulations, which requires them to monitor changes and develop new policies as necessary. These professionals protect the organization from risk while ensuring that it carries out its mission and vision. Compliance officers often specialize in certain industries, such as finance, healthcare or technology.

Related: Learn More About Being a Compliance Manager

10. Entrepreneur

National Average Salary: $69,017 per year

Primary Duties: Entrepreneurs start and operate businesses. They research market trends to identify needs and demands and develop viable solutions. They also hire employees, oversee production and manage marketing. These professionals often take on financial risk to start companies, and they seek funding from banks, investors and venture capital firms. Entrepreneurs can benefit from high-level legal, financial and business skills.

11. Budget analyst

National Average Salary: $75,429 per year

Primary Duties: Budget analysts advise organizations on using their financial resources. They research the company's revenues and expenditures, discuss corporate goals and develop strategies for improving efficiency. Then they create budgets that meet those objectives and actively monitor the company's spending. Budget analysts work closely with project managers and financial colleagues. With strong research and critical thinking skills and knowledge of financial regulations, lawyers can excel as a budget analyst.

12. Management analyst

National Average Salary: $82,595 per year

Primary Duties: Management analysts recommend strategies for improving a company's efficiency. They collect data on the organization's procedures, observe work processes, interview staff members and analyze financial information. Then they develop plans that can increase output without demanding increased expenditures or resources. Many management analysts specialize in areas like supply chain management or corporate reorganization. Familiarity with corporate and finance law and skills in problem-solving and attention to detail make this a strong choice for lawyers.

Related: Learn About Being a Business Analyst

13. Project manager

National Average Salary: $83,597 per year

Primary Duties: Project managers oversee the planning and execution of projects from beginning to end. They are responsible for creating budgets, establishing schedules, determining staffing needs and managing communication. They must also develop alternate plans in the event of delays or other challenges. Project managers can work in a wide range of industries, including law, technology and construction. Lawyers gain exceptional organization, time management and communication skills that can benefit them in this role.

Related: Learn About Being a Project Manager

14. Director of human resources

National Average Salary: $97,808 per year

Primary Duties: Directors of human resources manage hiring, benefits and employee relations for organizations of all sizes. These professionals are responsible for overseeing the recruiting and interviewing process as well as administering benefits and handling disputes. They must also monitor and understand employment laws and regulations, making this a strong choice for lawyers.

Related: Learn About Being an HR Director

15. Chief operating officer

National Average Salary: $120,047 per year

Primary Duties: Chief operating officers (COOs) are responsible for everything that affects an organization's operations. They create strategies to develop the company's infrastructure, ensure adequate staffing and maintain strong productivity levels. These executives work closely with HR, finance and project management leaders. COOs must have excellent leadership skills and a solid understanding of relevant rules and regulations, which a legal background can assist with.

Related: Learn About Being a COO (Chief Operating Officer)

16. Chief financial officer

National Average Salary: $132,293 per year

Primary Duties: Chief financial officers (CFOs) oversee financial matters for organizations. They are responsible for providing accurate financial reports, managing the company's investments and developing short- and long-term financial strategies. These executives work closely with financial specialists, including accountants, bookkeepers, controllers and advisors. Some CFOs also manage the company's legal and HR departments. Knowledge of finance and corporate law, as well as strong communication and leadership skills, can help lawyers become effective CFOs.

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