Martinez: “This new law is going to be challenging for many companies”
Eversheds-Sutherland’s managing partner Jacobo Martínez explains how changes in Spain’s labor laws are affecting employers.
LL: You assumed the position of managing partner over a year ago. How has the firm evolved under your leadership?
Martínez: Our successful evolution is due to Eversheds being an excellent firm with excellent lawyers. We began our journey with a very ambitious strategic plan for the next five years and I must say that the first year has been very satisfactory. It was a very good year from an economic perspective: we have grown by 21.5% by turnover and we are focusing on completing a significant business transformation in order to establish ourselves as an important law firm that is recognized for our specialization, excellence, and the full service we provide to our clients.
The continuation of the pandemic has caused many law firms to accelerate their shift toward flexible working. How has this effected your management of the firm?
We have analyzed the challenges created by the pandemic in order to make sure we can provide the best service to our clients without failing to the needs of our professionals. I must say that all the firm is committed in this sense, and we are always flexible with regard to implementing new solutions. We have implemented a flexible work program for our employees which has yielded very good results and excellent performance. I think that all law firms have had to adapt to this situation. For us, human capital is a key pillar underlying the growth of the firm.
I really hope that the third year of the pandemic is going to be the last.
What challenges are labor lawyers facing now as we begin year three of the pandemic?
I really hope that the third year of the pandemic is going to be the last. At the moment we have to deal with the new modifications to the workers’ statue that was recently approved in Spain, which among other things establishes a new framework for fixed-term contracts. This new law is going to be challenging for many companies in our country as our clients will have to change their recruitment structures in order to adapt to these new requirements. In addition, the law is not as clear as we would like it to be, so I am sure labor lawyers will have a very important role to play in helping their clients interpret it according to their needs.
You have recently been appointed as a member of European executive board in Eversheds Sutherland. What are the key objectives of this new appointment?
I am very grateful for both the new role and the recognition. We have an incredible global network. I will be leading the human resources area and the partner and associate development programs, which are some of the firm's strategic pillars. Among my new responsibilities I will try my best to develop, attract, retain, and maximize the potential of the best and most diverse group of employees, drive brand clarity, build a diverse and inclusive global community, and promote the growth of the firm.
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