The three week scheme was excellent as it was just enough time to discover whether PwC was right for you with 3 seats. There were plenty of social events and feedback was given for every assessment so that you always knew where you stood and how you could improve. Overall it was a well planned and very transparent scheme.
The legal teams at PwC really allowed you to get as much responsibility as you wanted. So if you were willing and able, there were always opportunities to impress your colleagues and supervisors through individual work and group tasks. Everyone was super friendly and was always happy to help if you needed it. Overall it was a very supportive environment.
Colleagues were always there to give you guidance. Feedback is a very important element of the PwC culture, and receiving constructive feedback on each of your tasks really enabled you to feel like you were learning on the job as a trainee would. A lot of guidance from the recruitment team and other colleagues was also provided in terms of the assessment which really aided in preparation.
The scheme at PwC was great in terms of both legal specific and general career skills. Everyone really celebrated being entrepreneurial and outgoing in terms of meeting people and making connections. It also encouraged individual responsibility in terms of its work, allowing you to feel like you were a valid member of the team and have some confidence when approaching new tasks.
Although there were some issues with timing of social events (ie some very early mornings and late nights) ultimately the structure was great. There was plenty of time to prepare for assessed tasks and attend social evenings. It was also very clear when and where you were expected to be at all times.
Overall, the experience was fantastic. The atmosphere was welcoming and the people really wanted to help you show yourself in your best light. There was support on multiple levels - whether through your trainee buddy, your supervisor, or your fellow vacation schemers - which meant that you always had someone to turn to.
Supervisors were in constant contact to ensure that PwC not only matched your career goals but also your personality and work ethic. There were also several opportunities to learn about new practice areas and refresh your memory of legal practice alongside other trainees. Seat supervisors were also happy to explain new concepts if necessary.
The insight gave a great example of what working at PwC was like. As the legal integration is relatively new, the scheme did not look to hide some of the difficulties that arose from the new structure. It also gave a perfect example of life as a trainee, with the same standards being applied to you.
Although each practice area had its own unique people and varying approaches to work, it was clear that PwC culture was a common thread between legal and non-legal areas. The length of the scheme really enabled you to explore the culture and establish whether it was an environment that suited you.
The biggest problem was deciding which practice areas to focus on! PwC offers a huge range of practices across the firm, and with such a friendly environment it was difficult to decide which areas you might to interested in working in. Once your life as a trainee starts though, I'm sure you would have plenty of support in the form of career conversations with a mentor which would allow you to decide on your future path.
Payment was reasonable for the length of time, and seems to match average salaries for legal vacation schemes. There was also reimbursement for expenses during the application process which were very easy to use.
There were multiple opportunities not only at specific networking events but also throughout the experience. We were actually actively encouraged to network with our colleagues in our specific seats, and with others through the assessments as they required you to sit down with other members of the firm to talk about their expertise.
All the networking opportunities were very accessible and really allowed you to have long conversations with a wide range of legal and non-legal professionals. This really allowed you to feel more comfortable in your seats and your assessments, as you'd often met and spoken to these people before.
Although there was mention of the different activities available through the firm, it wasn't something that was made a priority. From speaking to colleagues though, as it is a big firm, there are loads of different sports teams, team challenges and social events to get involved in.
Without I doubt I would recommend this scheme to all of my friends looking for training contacts. The word that comes to mind is refreshing, as as PwC isn't a law firm it really provides you with a unique legal experience that you won't get anywhere else while simultaneously being open and supportive.