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Senior Benefits Specialist

Job ID: 7513

Updated: Jan 4, 2024

Location: Chicago, IL, United States

Category: Human Resources


About Kirkland & Ellis

At Kirkland & Ellis, we are united in our ambition and drive to move forward. We share core values that help us achieve excellence: collaboration, talent empowerment, service, inclusion, respect and gratitude. Our people are our greatest asset, and we invest in the brightest talent and encourage a diversity of perspectives and strengths to create dynamic teams that operate at the pinnacle of their field. Our talented professionals show up every day knowing they will engage in meaningful work, continuous learning and professional development.
As one of the world’s leading law firms, we serve a broad range of clients with market-leading practices in private equity, M&A and other complex corporate transactions; investment fund formation and alternative asset management; restructurings; high-stakes commercial and intellectual property litigation; and government, regulatory and internal investigations. We handle the most complicated and sophisticated legal matters because we don’t just meet industry standards, we create them. We bring innovation and entrepreneurialism to every engagement and, as a result, have long-standing client relationships with leading global corporations and financial sponsors. With 6,500 employees (including 3,500 lawyers) operating from 20 offices across the United States, Europe, the Middle East and Asia, we are one of the largest law firms in the world and a top financial performer.

Essential Job Functions

The Senior Benefits Specialist will work in conjunction with the Benefits Management team and Firmwide Director of Benefits to support the efficient end-to-end administration of the Firm’s benefit plans and programs, with a significant focus on global family support resources and programming. Primary responsibilities include administering the Firm’s existing suite of family support offerings, researching, analyzing and recommending enhancements and new benefits, and working with internal parties to identify opportunities to promote the Firm’s existing plans and programs. Other duties will include supporting key departmental activities, including onboarding and orientation, compliance-related activities, open enrollment, and more. This role requires effective communication with brokers and vendors, creating, reviewing, and updating business processes, excellent customer service skills, and the ability to communicate effectively with attorneys and staff regarding the Firm’s comprehensive benefits offerings.

This role requires a results-driven professional who is highly organized, consistently delivers exceptional customer service, demonstrates keen attention to detail, is resourceful and creative in solving problems, and builds and maintains effective working relationships within and outside of the Firm. This role requires both independent work and collaboration with others, high personal performance standards, and some flexibility in working hours to collaborate effectively with our global HR and Benefits teams.


  1. Benefits Administration and Compliance
  • Review and maintain internal process documents, making updates and recommendations for change, where appropriate.
  • Clearly and accurately articulate benefit-related information both verbally and in written form. This includes translating insurance and medical industry terminology in a manner that is relatable to participants.
  • Confidently embrace new challenges and take initiative in identifying and implementing process improvements. Provide accurate information and propose and execute effective solutions to problems.
  • Engage in creative problem solving and escalate issues, as appropriate. 
  • Maintain strict confidentiality of sensitive and confidential data, as well as knowledge of regulations applicable to the data being handled.
  • Reconcile and process vendor and participant invoices.
  • Create, draft, and edit summaries and communications to internal and external participants.
  • Provide exceptional, prompt service to attorneys and staff on all benefits related issues. Monitor regulatory developments and make recommendations regarding policy, plan, and/or system updates that may be necessary as a result of those developments.
  1. Project Management and Mentoring
  • Effectively track and report on the status of workload and produce high quality, accurate work in a timely manner
  • Collaborate and develop strong interpersonal relationships both within and outside of the department.
  • Support department initiatives in collaboration with internal and external resources.

OTHER FUNCTIONS (This list is not exhaustive and may be supplemented and changed as necessary.)

  • Assist with any other functions/duties/special projects as assigned by management.

Qualifications & Requirements

Education, Work Experience, Skills

The ideal candidate will have superior written and oral communication skills and strong project management skills. They will also have a demonstrated history of creative problem-solving, be detail-oriented, and have the ability to work across all levels of management. The successful candidate will possess sound judgment and have the ability and desire to work in a fast-paced environment. A background in Human Resources is preferred. Bachelor's degree or equivalent and 5+ years of relevant experience required. Experience in a law or professional services firm is desirable. 

  • Required
  • Familiarity with U.S. health plans
  • Superior oral and written communication skills
  • Keen judgment and problem-solving skills
  • Organizational skills
  • Acute attention to detail
  • Responsiveness and dependability
  • Knowledge of employee benefits-related laws and regulations
  • Preferred
  • Familiarity with global/international benefits


  • Required
  • Proficiency in MS Office, including Outlook, Word, Access and PowerPoint
  • Preferred
  • Experience with PeopleSoft or other HRMS

How to Apply

Thank you for your interest in Kirkland & Ellis LLP.  To complete an application and submit your resume, please click "Apply Now."

Equal Employment Opportunity

All employment decisions, including the recruiting, hiring, placement, training availability, promotion, compensation, evaluation, disciplinary actions, and termination of employment (if necessary) are made without regard to the employee’s race, color, creed, religion, sex, pregnancy or childbirth, personal appearance, family responsibilities, sexual orientation or preference, gender identity, political affiliation, source of income, place of residence, national or ethnic origin, ancestry, age, marital status, military veteran status, unfavorable discharge from military service, physical or mental disability, or on any other basis prohibited by applicable law.

Closing Statement

The job postings and recruiting mailbox are for candidates only. If you are a recruiter, search firm or employment agency, and do not have a signed contract with Kirkland & Ellis LLP ("K&E") and have not been asked specifically to submit candidates, you will not be compensated in any way for your referral of a candidate even if K&E hires the candidate. Direct contact with K&E employees in an attempt to present candidates is inappropriate and will be a factor in determining any future professional relationship with the Firm. #LI-Hybrid #LI-NK1