1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
As a work experience student at Pinsent Masons, we got to rotate around some of the departments in the firm each day; I was in TMT (telecommunications, media and technology) for the duration of Monday and Tuesday, I then moved to Commercial for Wednesday, Construction on Thursday, and Litigation on Friday. In each department I was assigned a trainee solicitor who gave me tasks, which they either have had to do before, or of which they would have had to do if we were not there. Some of the tasks I was assigned include proof reading emails to clients, drafting contracts and research. The work I was given came with a real sense of responsibility; knowing that it would have had to be done by a trainee anyway contributed strongly to this feeling. This sense of responsibility extended further than just the work I was given, I also felt trusted with the responsibilities that come with being treated fully as an adult; as work experience students, we got to utilize everything the employees do right from joining in with their social activities, enquiring about taking part in their exercise classes, having a pass that gained us entry into all aspects of the office, and being trusted with private and confidential documents. I had many opportunities to interact with the Lawyers e.g. at Lunch, in the office, via email; the environment at Pinsent Masons was so friendly and welcoming, I felt I could email over any questions I had to my trainee, walk over to them, or even pick up the phone!
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
During my week, I got to fully exercise my communication skills as I had the opportunity to meet/communicate with people at all levels in the firm e.g. from Partners to Paralegals to PAs. I leant many skills related to independence both inside and outside the workplace; outside the office, I learnt how to make my way around the city, for example. Inside the workplace, I learnt skills related to independence in terms of making my way around the office and getting on with the work independently of my trainee.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
I found the programme thoroughly enjoyable mostly because of the company culture and the environment; everyone was so unbelievably friendly, welcoming, unpatronizing, professional and clearly offered a genuine interest in giving you the best experience possible. The programme exceeded my expectations in that it was so structured and detailed, meaning a realistic, balanced view on being a Lawyer was offered so I had so many opportunities to gain as detailed insight as possible into the profession.
4. How valued do you feel by Pinsent Masons?
The fact that the tasks that were allocated to me were tasks that trainee Lawyers would have had to do themselves at some, mostly fairly recent, point made me feel a huge sense of responsibility and, consequently, value. Also, when a task was given to me, my trainees often said 'it would really help me out if..', or 'I would really appreciate it if...', which obviously made me feel extremely valued. Also, all my efforts did not go unnoticed as the attitude of the trainees was so positive- I even got a follow up email of recognition from one of my trainees! I was also presented with many opportunities to get involved/witness tasks, projects, lunch meetings, group phone calls with a clients etc, which further contributed to my feeling valued.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
The work experience programme at Pinsent Masons was the most structured and well organized work experience I have ever done.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
I received huge amounts of support from my training provider; I felt completely free to ask any questions whenever I felt the need, and never felt as if I was interrupting them. All the tasks were explained clearly and fully and any problems were addressed immediately. Attitudes were extremely supportive and not in the slightest bit patronizing making for an extremely enjoyable experience.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
All the staff were so helpful and friendly, I felt welcome to talk to any of them, not just my allocated trainee!
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
The work experience programme is unpaid.
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
Pinsent Masons is nicknamed the 'party firm' because there are regular company events and activities such as cricket, drinks, sports, gym classes, dinners etc. As a work experience student, I did not have much time to get involved with much as I was only there for a week, but if I were there for longer I definitely would have seized every opportunity to get involved!
9. Would you recommend Pinsent Masons to a friend?
The experience was so well balanced, realistic, informative, detailed, well structured, social, enjoyable and, surprisingly, really fun!
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Pinsent Masons?
The application process for the Work Experience scheme is fairly length, so make sure to leave enough time to do it in as much detail, with as much precision and care as possible. From my experience, Pinsent Masons is a firm that likes people to be themselves and be different; stand alone good grades is unlikely to make you stand out and allow them to recognize that there is something more than just academics, but a personality too!
More from Pinsent MasonsMore Reviews Company Profile
Get personalised jobs straight to your inbox
Save time job hunting - get tailored job opportunities sent straight to you!