1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
Legal Support Co-ordinator
What did I do?
Helping with research for bids (bidding to win work for the firm), drafting client updates on legal/commercial/regulatory issues, matter related work (chargeable to the client) - this was mainly legal research, corporate responsibility work e.g. fundraising for charity.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
Enhanced research, presentation, networking and working with a wide variety of people skills. Learnt how to work in a professional/corporate environment.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
The programme exceeded my expectations. I thought I would be either marginalised due to my lack of legal qualification/age or be given purely menial tasks e.g. photocopying. As it happens, I have had next to no photocopying tasks and my work has been both varied and challenging. The team I was placed in (Intellectual Property) was extremely friendly and supportive and I also found the varied nature of the work (they do both non-contentious and contentious work) interesting. I was also given a large amount of responsibility early on and had a good amount of client contact (probably more than the trainees in my department).
4. How valued do you feel by Pinsent Masons?
Very - I was asked to organise the first phase on a large piece of due dilligence work; this was a large amount of responsibility and I felt valued in that they trusted me with that kind of work and also once I had completed it I was made to feel valued.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
All very good. We had 2 weeks of induction. The 1st week was with all the new-joining trainees so we received all of the initial training that they did, which is quite a lot. There are also department and firm-wide training and CPD sessions. The firm operate a 'buddy' system which means you have a junior lawyer looking out for you which is very helpful, as well as an experienced supervisor.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
As much as needed, despite being busy.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
HR have always been responsive when I've queried something but I haven't really needed much support in other areas.
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
Despite being in London I am able to meet all of my costs (of which there are many: rent, car insurance, parking, train, food, dry cleaning, suits, entertainment, food etc.) and still save some for university.
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
Yes, the firm operate a huge corporate responsibility programme - there are also lots of social events.
9. Would you recommend Pinsent Masons to a friend?
Good experience, you learn a lot, gives you a head start when applying for Training Contracts (or even other jobs) and it gives you something different and interesting to talk about at job interviews. Also, the length of the placement (8 months) is perfect. I had the oppotunity to extent my contract for a month to 9 months because the firm asked me to but that still leaves ample time and money to go travelling before starting university.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Pinsent Masons?
The application process is quite straightforward so the only tip I could give would be to read up on commercial news e.g. recent large mergers, a particular area of law that interests you perhaps... There were no assessment days (aside from interviews) so that makes it a little easier.
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