Practicing law includes interviewing a client to identify the legal question, analyzing the question, researching relevant law, devising legal solutions to problems, and executing such solutions through specific tasks such as drafting a contract or filing a motion with a court.
Most academic legal training is directed to identifying legal issues, researching facts and law, and arguing both the facts and law in favor of either side in any case. For several years, law schools have sent through far more students than new job openings have become available. This has often lead to attorneys (once they pass the bar) seeking work in other occupations, either by choice or by the lack of employment opportunities.
This has led to a market in legal temps or contract attorneys, where attorneys spend a certain period of time working on tasks such as discovery for a case.