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Practice Assistant – Intellectual Property (Patents)

Reference #: PAIP_-_04-21-21
Ottawa
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Open Date    April 21, 2021
Close Date    May 7, 2021

The Ottawa office of Borden Ladner Gervais LLP (BLG), a leading, innovative and client-focused law firm in Canada, is seeking a Practice Assistant – Intellectual Property (Patents).

Purpose of the Role

The Practice Assistant’s primary purpose is to provide assistance to leading Agents/Lawyers efficiently supporting the management of their practice contributing to the overall service excellence provided to our clients by the Intellectual Property group.

Key Responsibilities

The key responsibilities of this role are:

Administrative

  • Monitoring and managing due list (sending reminders, reviewing and following up with client and Agent regarding due dates, ensuring due dates are met)
  • Monitoring daily diaries
  • Managing emails, incoming correspondence and files for Agents
  • Manage calendars, ensuring they are up to date and reminding Agents of meetings etc. on a daily basis
  • Arrange meetings, book conference rooms, refreshments, check rooms prior to meetings etc. and liaise with other attendees, both internal and external
  • Arrange for travel bookings and related details to be made through the support teams
  • Arrange for files to be opened and closed, supervise general filing requirements and record keeping
  • Coordinate/conduct conflict searches
  • Attend to payment and renewal of membership fees as requested
  • Support Agents in marketing activities including involvement in preparation of pitches and presentations
  • Delegate appropriate administrative tasks to Administrative Assistants

Communication/CRM

  • Take internal and external telephone queries, responding as appropriate and/or ensuring that all messages are passed on in a timely manner
  • Monitor post and/or e-mails and dealing with as appropriate and ensure that all client related correspondence is passed on to an appropriate Agent if the relevant person is out of the office
  • Liaise with administrative support departments on behalf of Agents as required
  • Become an active part in the care of clients and be wholly familiar with contacts/clients
  • Enter, maintain and update client details and relevant information in the Firm’s contacts systems
  • Deal with basic client queries and general administration, arrange client meetings

Financial - Billing

  • Assist Agents and Practice Group Billing Coordinator in the billing and credit control process by liaising with the Agents and accounts and to produce standard prebill financial/time reports through the system
  • Request cheques, bank transfers and paying in money received, as appropriate
  • Monitor and coordinate monthly WIP
  • Monitor Agent's time entry

Other

  • Provide assistance to immediate colleagues in the department and, where practical, other departments
  • Team duties will therefore include assisting other members of the firm, both proactively and at the request of the Team Leader, and any other duties as requested by the Agents or Team Leader
  • Backing-up assigned teammates during absences is an important component of all LSS roles

Document Production

  • Producing, formatting and amending client correspondence, documents, reports, attachments etc. related to the Intellectual Property practice, in accordance with client special instructions and using the firm’s specific systems/procedures
  • Drafting or creating various Patent official correspondence
  • Attending to on-line filing processing of Patent official correspondence
  • Proofreading and checking documents for accuracy
  • Producing and amending client reports and other important documents using Excel, PowerPoint, organizational charts, etc.
  • Assisting Team Leaders, fellow Practice Assistants and Document Production Specialists locally and nationally with workload as required
  • Supporting and helping other team members by sharing system knowledge and ensuring own and others’ skills are developed
  • Invoice and report on all completed tasks as soon as possible
  • Check correspondence, attachments, documents, reports, presentations, faxes etc. produced by the Document Production team before they are passed to the relevant Agent and undertake basic/minor amendments where appropriate
  • Delegating appropriate document production work to Document Specialists

Key Competencies

  • A minimum of 5 years’ relevant experience as an IP Assistant supporting Patent Agents/Lawyers
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills in English
  • Advanced knowledge of Microsoft Word, Outlook, Excel, PowerPoint, research tools and other systems implemented by the firm and an accurate typing speed of approximately 60 words per minute
  • Committed to furthering their knowledge to remain up-to-date on current technology and best practices
  • Excellent communication, organizational and teamwork skills
  • Excellent attention to detail with the ability to think ahead and use initiative
  • Flexible, dependable and able to remain calm under pressure and work to tight deadlines
  • Conscientious, approachable and enthusiastic
  • Able to quickly build confidence, respect, and trust with others
  • Have a positive approach to daily tasks and have a solutions focused working method

How to Apply

We thank all applicants for their interest in this position, however, only applicants selected for an interview will be contacted.

Everyone at BLG is required to carry out the duties of their role while upholding the important principles of our respectful workplace policies, and treating everyone with respect, regardless of position. At BLG, valuing diversity and inclusion is key to a respectful workplace.

BLG is committed to fostering a diverse and inclusive workplace. We welcome and encourage applications from diverse candidates, including people with disabilities. Accommodations are available on request for candidates taking part in all aspects of the selection process.

*Please note that relatives of current BLG employees and partners are not eligible for consideration.