The insight week with CMS was very enjoyable. The Early Talent Team always made sure we were about to reach them if were needed and there was plenty of opportunities to bond with the other people on the programme, especially during the escape room activity at the start of the week.
CMS made me feel very valued when I was experiencing their place of work. I felt very valued because i was taking on work that would be helpful to the firm rather than just miscellaneous jobs. We all undertook important work that week rather than just making coffee or tea.
I received constant support both online and in person. There was a communication chat set up on the computers to the early talent team. I was also working opposite my supervisor (Sophie Gallagher) and she was very helpful with all questions I had when completing tasks. I was never left to struggle.
The actual work carried out has not been relevant to any of my studies since the insight week. However, other elements such as networking and personal presentation skills have been very useful moving forwards. It has also been useful to understand the level of professionalism a global law firm expects from its employees.
Very structured. On the first day we were given booklets explaining where we would be working and also informing us of different activities throughout the week. These activities (such as a quiz competing against the other CMS firms) were very effective in breaking up the week and sharing our experiences with the other students.
Everyone was very positive and passionate about their work. I did not speak to a single person who was in a negative mood and (having experienced bad workplaces in the past) that resonated with me. All members of CMS enhanced the atmosphere of professionalism and passion during my insights week.
The firm invested a great deal of time into me. They held a workshop on the first day of the first steps week that focussed on personal presentation skills and training. This has been useful to me in terms of interacting within the firm and also how i conduct myself moving forwards in law.
It was very effective in giving an experience that was like working there full time. We arrived when the employees arrived and left at the same time too. We were involved in discussions central to the work that was being undertaken, giving us a feeling of involvement and importance whilst there.
CMS is a company that advertises itself as forward thinking and inclusive, always open to new ideas and new ways of thinking. Whilst at the firm, the work undertaken and the attitude of the workers there showed my that this is not simply branding. CMS genuinely fulfills what it promises to its clients.
Before my insights week at CMS, I had not experienced a work environment. However throughout the week there I was able to apply the legal theory I had been learning in classes. This demonstrated to me that the areas of law I enjoyed learning about (commercial law) is applied in practice.
CMS did pay us during the insights week and reimburse travel. This was extremely generous as, without the pay, a week in Edinburgh may have proven a struggle for me. The payment from CMS meant I could focus fully on the work I was undertaking that week and not on the costs.
There was an opportunity to network with trainees midway through the week over tea and cakes. This was very useful as it enabled us to hear about someone's personal experience, and about the process we hope to experience in the next few years. We were also able to ask any questions we had.
There were opportunities to network throughout the entire week I was there. These were organised, such as the mid-week conversation over tea with current trainees. There were also opportunities to network at any time during the week as everyone in the firm was friendly and approachable. This feeling was elevated by the open nature of the Edinburgh CMS offices.
Throughout the week I was preparing a presentation on commercial awareness and how CMS is dedicated to this aspect of their company. Whilst doing this I learnt about the community programmes that protect the environment as well as the pro bono work that CMS engages in every week in the community.
I would absolutely recommend the CMS first steps programme to a friend and have done so on many occasions. This is not only because they will gain valuable insights into the firm but also because CMS takes care of the people working with them whilst ensuring they are suitably challenged.