Researching Law Firms

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Law Firms’ Own Information

Law Careers.Net – includes a large searchable directory of law firms and their training contracts and vacation schemes including up to date application deadlines – see www.lawcareers.net

Website/Brochure – the law firm’s own website and online/offline brochures

Training Contract Handbook – extensive hard copy publication listing law firms and training contract details.

You Tube – it is worth searching You Tube for the firm’s name to see if there are additional marketing materials about the firms that you can use for your research into them. Some firms will have added video interviews with their graduate recruitment partner or with trainees which can often provide you with more information. For example, see this video about Graduate Careers with Allen & Overy that talks about what skills they are looking for in their trainees amongst other things – Allen & Overy Careers

Third Party Information on Law Firms

Chambers Student – a good resource of information about law firms and training contracts. In particular there is an “Our Report” or “True Picture” section for many firms which is Chambers own real world report about the firms. This is often a lot more revealing and informative than the firm’s own promotional literature – see www.chambersstudent.co.uk

Lex 100 – this is the self-proclaimed insider’s guide to the top law firms in the UK. It contains the results of surveys of current trainee solicitors are various law firms and therefore gives a much better idea of what it is like to do a training contract with the firms – see www.lex100.com

Inside Buzz – a website providing some useful information about law firms and the recruitment process. Browse detailed law firm profiles, read trainee and solicitor reviews and brush up on the latest interview advice. See here: http://www.insidebuzz.co.uk/law.html. If you are applying to one of the bigger firms you should also check out their revealing guide to the top law firms including quotes from trainees and solicitors – see here: http://goo.gl/VS6Zs

Target Jobs – a good graduate website with information about some of the bigger law firms, including the key skills they are looking for in their trainees – access these here: http://goo.gl/QQf2s. There is also an excellent section which gives details about the various law practice areas including information about the key skills needed, and types of technical law that are involved – see here: http://goo.gl/EEM74.

Peer Information on Law Firms & Graduate Recruitment

With each of these resources you are advised to use the search functionality to search for law firm’s names to find information about them and their recruitment processes. Try to avoid reviewing the threads and information as it appears as this can waste a lot of time – just be very specific with your searches instead to find relevant content that could help you.

Trainee Solicitor Forum – this is a discussion forum for law students and trainees where you can find information or ask your own questions – see www.traineesolicitor.co.uk

Roll on Friday Forum – this is an unmoderated and sometimes lively forum but it can include some useful discussions as well as help you learn the challenges you may face in the application process – see Roll on Friday Training Discussion

Student Room Forum – another good forum for people seeking to forge a legal career – see The Student Room

Wiki Job – this is a wiki that has a good law section that has information about some of the larger law firms including, in some instances, interview questions and details of assessment days – see www.wikijob.co.uk

Legal Press

The main legal press have their own websites which have a search function so you can again enter the firm’s name and see what comes up to give you a more current background to the firm – see the following:

www.thelawyer.com

www.legalweek.com

www.lawgazette.co.uk

Further Research

Google – many people miss an easy opportunity to find more relevant information to help tailor their applications by not using the search engines. Search for things like the firm’s name together with the practice area you are interested in and see what comes up – often you will find information that you wouldn’t find otherwise to help give you a fuller picture of that department.

Also search for the names of the key graduate recruitment personnel such as the HR contact or the graduate recruitment partner – you will often find that they have given interviews on other websites that can reveal more about what they are looking for in their applicants/trainees. You can then tailor you applications to match this profile more closely.