1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
I am a legal support co-ordinator / gap year studen but often other members of the team are more likely to give me trainee work. In the beginning I was eased in to the job with more mundane tasks, but this is to be expected and was in fact welcomed as I integrated into the team and tried to understand the legal work. Now I do complicated tasks that I never thought at the start I would have been doing, and depsite still being given a few proof-reading jobs, I actually still enjoy these and it keeps my work varied. The members of the team are very friendly and if I ever need to ask questions, they are more than happy to help (especially in those early months).
I have many responsibilities now, including being the only junior member of the team working on two matters with an associate, meaning I get trainee jobs including drafting contracts and contacting clients and contractors.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
I have learnt so many new skills and most importantly my confidence has grown.
The firm offers a lot of internal training which helped me to understand the work I was doing much more and has also opened my eyes to other areas of the law.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
The work I do is both interesting and challenging. The team could not be better, we have the most fun on the 7th floor, and the teamwork ethos is incredibly strong up here.
It exceeded my expectations because I did not know that when it came time to leave I would feel such an attachment to my department, I'll even miss the work!
4. How valued do you feel by Pinsent Masons?
Inevitably there are some members who make you feel more valued than others and this is to be expected, there is rarely a time when I feel as though my work was not appreciated or I do not feel like a valued member of staff.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
The induction was well organised, and I think it definately worked well that we did this with the new trainees because when we joined the firm we had already formed friendships and were very supportive of each other in those first few weeks when we were all finding our feet.
The training was well structured, intense at the start, and much of it was forgotten in the first few weeks, but there are many refreshers and the PA's can help with almost any query.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
We had monthly appraisals where we didn't just dicuss how I was getting on with my work but also how I was getting on with the team and the firm, in this aspect it could not have been better.
He was always happy to help, as are the other junior members of the team therefore I learnt who to ask certain problems to in order to be most efficient.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
I think we recieved enough support from HR etc, whilst there could have been more, for me personally I don't think it was necessarily needed because we had supervisors within our departments.
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
I live outside the city so the only real cost for me was travel which is not a huge portion of your income.
The deli and internal costa coffee is also well subsidised so if there is a need to buy food it's pretty reasonable anyway and most of the socials are paid for by the department.
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
We had a strong social team in my department therefore there was always lots of opportunites to go out with my team and do some bonding.
There are also lots of sports teams, for the girls netball, which despite me being incredibly rubbish, they welcomed we with open arms and pretended I was amazing.
In my time I took part in local volunteering opportunies, such as going to a local school to mentor children who were struggling in english and maths.
They also have internal Yoga, Pilates and Circuit training sessions on a lunch time and after work to help staff juggle their time.
9. Would you recommend Pinsent Masons to a friend?
There's such a great atmosphere to the firm, it's open plan, everybody is approachable, even the partners. The work is challenging, varied and fun and most importantly the people and friends I've met during my time here have been fantastic.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Pinsent Masons?
The online application process is quite long, but think carefully about your answers, it'll be worth the extra time in the end and make sure you check you're spelling (one of the biggest things I've learnt at the firm is that attention to detail is key!).