I really enjoyed my time at DLA Piper. The scheme was well organised and the events which we attended added something different to the scheme, such as going for dinner and visiting the Lord Mayor of Sheffield. I was given actual work to do which enabled me to gain an accurate insight into the sort of work I would be doing as a trainee. I also enjoyed meeting all of the other students in London and have made some real friendships with the other students in my regional office.
I did feel valued during my time here as we had talks from the CEO's and important people who had taken time out of their busy schedules to meet us and talk to us. This made me feel as though the firm was invested in the scheme and genuinely did value me as a potential employee. Additionally, the fact that we were paid also makes me feel as though they valued my time.
We were allocated supervisors/ line managers for the two weeks in our offices. This helped me as my supervisor was able to support me and answer any questions I may have about the work I had been set. Also, had I felt like I needed support I know that the office manager partner in my office would have been more than happy to give me advice and help me. The trainees were also very supportive of us.
The most important skill I developed during this placement was certainly my interpersonal skills and having confidence. I now feel able to engage in conversation with anyone (at networking events). My attention to detail was also tested as some of the tasks I was doing required a high level of detail, which will help me when studying law as I will be able to pull out the key bits of information which are really required.
It was very well structured. Despite any issues regarding technology etc the placement still ran smoothly and the insight sessions on the video conference every day really added a good structure to the placement. Also, the additional events which were put on were enjoyable. It was obvious that a lot of planning had gone into how the placement would be structured.
In London, the atmosphere was very exciting. I did feel slightly out of my depth and uncomfortable at times in London, yet this is probably because I am not from London and it did seem very intense. However, in my regional office the atmosphere was outstanding, the people were all lovely, friendly and willing to help.
The company did invest in me in terms of development as I feel like the placement really challenged me and stretched me. Thus, through carrying out preparation for and doing presentations, I developed skills which were not too strong before the placement.
I think it gave a realistic insight into what working at the firm would actually be like. We were able to interact with trainees and ask them what they really thought of working there and what the hours were etc. This meant we got truthful answers and makes me think what I experienced during the placement would be similar to what working full time would be like.
The placement made me feel as though I was part of the firm and so as we were integrated it was easy to get a feel for the culture. Also, being surrounded by people all day for 3 weeks meant that we were able to understand the culture.
Before I did the placement I was not sure that I wanted to do commercial law. However, the placement has made me decide that I definitely want to pursue a career in commercial law rather than family or criminal.
Being paid for the placement made me feel valued and I think it is appropriate that we were paid, as some people had to take unpaid leave in order to complete the placement. I am yet to receive my reimbursement for expenses, yet I am sure this will not take long.
There were many networking events. Especially in the regional office, we even had an event on how to develop networking skills. On the penultimate night, we went out with the trainees which was a really good way to end the placement and consolidate friendships.
There were plenty of events. My regional office also put on tours of places in our city which was good as it enabled us to get to know the city of where we will be working aswell.
Yes, we spoke to trainees who informed us of football teams and netball teams which we can partake in. Also, the whole office tended to go for drinks on a Friday after work which was a nice touch.
Definitely. I think the placement was excellent and really did enable me to gain an accurate insight into what life at DLA Piper would be like. It tested me and challenged me, which in turn has helped me to develop and grow as a person. There were no times when I was bored or disengaged.
Insight / Vacation Scheme (< 4 Weeks)
15th July 2017