Those looking to pursue a career in law will know that training contracts and pupillages are the golden ticket, as well as being the final step on the road to qualifying as a solicitor.
This period of recognised training helps you put your knowledge into a real-life context, and over these two years, you’ll get the chance to learn about the law firm’s different departments, including contentious and non-contentious practice areas, and get training from an expert in the field.
With a training contract in place, you can then go on to pass the Professional Skills Course (PSC). You’ll need to have experience in client care and professional standards, financial and business skills and advocacy and communication skills.
With major opportunities for development at stake, you’ll need to find the law firm that’s right for you. LawCareers.Net has a great training contract search, making it the perfect place to launch your legal journey.
— LawCareers.Net (@LawCareersNetUK) March 17, 2017
Once you’ve made a list of firms you’d like to work with, you need to be able to stand out from the crowd. How do you do that when there’s so much competition?
Bindman Solicitors, expert company in legal practice for over 30 years, has given us some advice on how to pip the competition to the post for that vital training contract…
Be selective – and know why you’ve picked the firm
You don’t want to limit yourself by only applying to one firm, but a scattergun approach won’t show your interest in an individual firm. Make your choice wisely, and make sure you include reasons for choosing that specific firm. Be considered, complimentary and honest.
Make sure you meet the firm’s criteria and show it in the application
You’re wasting your time – and the firm’s – if they need you to have grades you haven’t achieved, or don’t meet other criteria. Only apply for positions you are eligible for, and your 100 percent more likely to succeed. When it comes to the application, answer exactly what you’re asked – if you need to give two examples, give two. The devil’s in the detail, and you need to be able to follow briefs and instructions to the letter.
— LawCareers.Net (@LawCareersNetUK) March 12, 2017
Get as much industry experience as possible
It’s an obvious one, but that’s because it’s so important. You need to show your dedication to the job and the industry, and pursuing work experience is a great way to achieve this. Summer and winter breaks are ideal – shadow a solicitor for a week, or answer the telephones in a firm – it all helps.
Show you’re a worker
Law’s an intensive course, so law firms are always impressed if candidates have managed to hold down a job whilst studying. It shows you’re a hard worker, that you stand on your own two feet, and can handle different types of responsibility.
Give it some personality
The law firm has to work with you for two years – maybe even longer if they offer you a position – so you need to makes sure that you’re likeable. Find ways to showcase your personal interests and personality. Be yourself too, you want them to like you for you, and you need to be comfortable while working there.