Straight forward and relatively stress-free. I applied via SAP’s careers website. This involved submitting basic information such as predicted grades, addresses and contact details. It also involved answering three competency questions in addition to providing my CV and a cover letter.
After a successful telephone interview, I was invited to the assessment day held at the Feltham office. SAP are fantastic at keeping applicants informed after the initial application. I even arranged to meet up with one of the current Legal Associates in the canteen before 9am on the assessment day to have a chat and ease my nerves.
The day itself started with a quirky presentation focusing on what SAP is all about. Bonus points are awarded to those who go above and beyond in their research as there were some questions about SAP at the end. Following this was a group exercise. This assessed my ability to work in a team and included some presenting. The exercise is not about who can shout the loudest, but who can communicate clearly, adapt and listen. After the group exercise, I enjoyed a free lunch (yes!) with some of my future team before completing a written exercise and attending the final interview.
The telephone interview was with the current Legal Associates and a member of the legal team. It comprised of typical interview questions and went through my CV in detail. A quick Google search or a browse on Glassdoor was immensely useful beforehand. The atmosphere was friendly and inviting. The interviewers were more concerned with getting to know my motivations, rather than box ticking.
The face-to-face interview was with both the UK and Ireland General Counsel and VP and General Counsel for EMEA North. Compared to the telephone interview, it naturally had a slightly more formal tone. An inevitable consequence of being face-to-face with your potential managers. Nevertheless, both interviews were more like a conversation than an interrogation.
If you’re worried about being forced to grab coffee all day, don’t be. The work matters and you will be trusted to manage it. Compared to other pre-graduate roles, Legal Associates at SAP are given experiences that most do not see until they begin their training contracts.
My responsibilities were varied and covered the UK and Irish markets. Notably, I was responsible for reviewing a vast number of software implementation contracts, valued between £50,000 - £1,500,000, with many FTSE 100 companies. In other words, hands-on experience undergraduates should not pass up.
Managing non-disclosure agreements, or “NDAs”, is the bread and butter of Legal Associates. I drafted (a lot!), arranged signatures and negotiated directly with customers regularly. This is where I was given the most autonomy, only reaching out to my manager for ad-hoc guidance, signatures and drafting feedback.
Importantly, no day is the same. If you keep on top of your existing workload, there are fantastic opportunities to get involved in other projects within the Legal team and across the business.
A confident explanation of your experiences is sure to make you stand out during interviews. In short, be sure to know what you did, the problems you faced and what you have learned.
Ever-changing daily challenges, meeting new people and the satisfaction of advising colleagues or helping a transaction get across the line.
Leaving the office. Starting out you can get caught up in wanting to perform your role more effectively. I did. While a mindset of practice makes perfect is great, balancing this with your life outside the office is extremely important. It’s vital to arrive for work fresh and motivated by ensuring you don’t forget to do the things you enjoy.