First Year Springboard Scheme at Clifford Chance

Insight / Vacation Scheme (< 4 Weeks)
London Greater London
Review Date
Less than £ 10,000
Commercial Law Corporate Law

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About You
The Organisation
Everything Else


About You

1. To what extent did you enjoy the insight?

I very much enjoyed the insight week, from the informative presentations to the networking and social events, I was always fully interested and engaged. The week had been extremely well organised and I had the chance to speak to a lot of different people. I had so many opportunities to make the most of the time I spent at the firm.


2. To what extent did you feel valued during your time at the company or firm?

Every representative of Clifford Chance I spoke to was truly interested in myself and my interests, any question was no trouble to answer. It was really nice that the trainees and associates did not mind taking time out of their day to talk to and get to know the group. Many encouraged us to email them if we had any questions whatsoever. They could not have done anymore to make me feel more welcomed or valued.


3. How much guidance/support did you receive during the insight?

The sessions we were given were all informative and had a different focus. From guiding us through the structure of acquisition finance to the training contract process, the support was always there if we ever needed extra information. Its important to note that guidance was available prior to and after the insight scheme, I received all the information I needed and even invitations to networking events.


4. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and information you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?

I believe that the scheme has been invaluable to me in so many ways. We received a lot of information on Clifford Chance itself but the main focus of the scheme was giving us the tools we needed to succeed. For example, there was a presentation on understanding lawyers and a workshop on communication/interview skills which will inevitably help me in my degree and future career.


The Organisation

5. How well structured was the insight?

It was planned so we could get the most out of the experience, although this meant a busy schedule, we were really well looked after with lovely food, a trip to Paris and social events. The week ran smoothly and I felt there was a good balance between presentations, networking events and time to get to know the group.


6. How was the general atmosphere during your insight?

The atmosphere surpassed my expectations. What really stood out was the friendliness of other Springboarders, trainees and the Graduate Recruitment team in what I expected to be an overly competitive atmosphere. Everybody was professional and motivated, but extremely down to earth, honest and lighthearted. I believe this is something which makes Clifford Chance stand out amongst its competitors.


7. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?

This is perhaps something difficult to evaluate as I only spent a week at the firm, thus I would say there was more development than personal training. A lot of time was spent on expanding our knowledge of the practice areas, and some of these presentations were given by partners. But there was also a focus on developing our skills, particularly communication and presentation skills, as well as understanding what skills make a good lawyer.


8. To what extent did the insight help you to understand what it would be like to have a full time role with the company or firm?

We spent a lot of time with people who work at the firm, giving us an idea of the firm's values. There was a session in which we could ask any anonymous questions, many were controversial but were answered honestly, allowing us to see potential disadvantages of working at the firm. I think the day of work shadowing was most useful in this respect as I completed a trainee level task and had lunch with the department team. This gave me a true picture of what it would be like to work at Clifford Chance in the future.


9. How much did the insight help you in understanding the company culture?

The purpose of the scheme was not to "sell" Clifford Chance, and for this reason nobody was trying to make the firm into something it wasn't. Therefore, we were given a very real and honest understanding of the company culture, in regard to both its advantages and disadvantages.


10. How valuable was the content of the day in helping you to decide on your future career path?

I had already decided that a legal career was right for me. However, my experience at Clifford Chance not only reaffirmed this but actually made me passionate about a law firm, rather than a legal career in general.


Other Information

11. Were you paid or reimbursed adequately for this experience?

We were paid £350 for the week, and could also be reimbursed for an early morning taxi to the station for the Paris trip. Having been on the scheme, I would happily have not been paid as it was such an enjoyable and valuable experience.

12. Were there opportunities for networking and meeting other employees of the company or firm?

At every lunch, networking event and social event there were always employees we could talk to. It was great to chat to employees in informal settings, such as the theatre event and the meal on the last day. I noticed that every employee really wanted to network with us and wanted to be there, which I truly appreciate.


13. How were the networking/ social event opportunities?

Every event was different and interesting, this created a nice balance between the focused presentations, as the events were more relaxed and social. Everything was provided for, which meant we could make the most of the opportunity and get to know people. I found all the events extremely enjoyable and have made some great friends!


14. Did you find out about activities that employees can get involved in outside of work?

We had a presentation on pro-bono activities which was informative and interesting, I could tell this is something the firm is very passionate about. I wasn't given any information on other activities, such as sports teams for example, but there were so many opportunities to ask employees about this at networking and social events.


15. Would you recommend this insight to a friend?

I would most definitely recommend this experience. It completely surpassed my expectations and proved to be equally informative as it was enjoyable. By the end of the week I felt that I was amongst a group of good friends rather than strangers, I think this is something quite rare within law firms. It is one thing reading about Clifford Chance on their website, but being able to experience the culture, the work and meet the people is an incredible and unforgettable opportunity.