Winter Vacation Scheme at Simmons & Simmons LLP

Insight / Vacation Scheme (< 4 Weeks)
London Central London and City
Review Date
Less than £ 10,000
Intellectual Property Law


About You
The Organisation
Everything Else


About You

Role Description

Winter Vacation Scheme

1. To what extent did you enjoy the insight?

My placement with the firm was for one week but had an excellent balance between time with the department and working on tasks and introductory seminars. The firm did an excellent job of providing exposure and insight to its various components, functions and objectives. The overall effect of this allowed me to better understand and consider the potential and variety of a career with the firm.


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

The department I was placed with operated an open door policy (other floors in the firm have changed to open-plan working spaces). During my time, different members of the team would come in and introduce themselves, ask how I was enjoying my time, and offer to include me in their different projects. Whenever I was tasked with a piece of work by anyone across the team they always followed up and thanked me for my contribution.


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

During the scheme I was partnered with a Trainee buddy and an Associate-level Supervisor. Both parties provided different perspectives, guidance and support. My Trainee buddy was incredibly helpful and made sure that I felt included by inviting me to different meetings, seminars and socials which allowed me additional exposure during my time at the firm.


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

My law degree studies are fairly academic but the placement allowed me to better understand the practical application of these skills. The idea of "commercial awareness" can seem fairly abstract but my time at the firm offered insight as to the relationship between clients' interests and the many services provided by a law firm.


The Organisation

5. How well structured was the insight?

My time with the department was well-structured yet independent and flexible so that I was responsible for prioritising tasks and projects as they were assigned. The sessions provided by Grad Rec were well placed throughout the week so that as we became more familiar with the firm and each other, we became more confident and comfortable working in groups and sharing ideas.


6. How was the general atmosphere during your insight?

The atmosphere was genuinely friendly and inclusive amongst the placement participants. The small group allowed the opportunity for everyone to get to know each other and a sense of professional familiarity to develop. Similarly, the firm was incredibly welcoming and earnest. From trainees to partners offers of help and advice appeared genuine.


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


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?

My Trainee buddy was very helpful in answering any questions about her experience with the firm, as were other members at the firm. It was particularly helpful that the tasks I was assigned during the placement were the kind that would be assigned to a trainee and I was able to liaise directly the responsible team member and supervisor.


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


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

The placement confirmed my interest in this career path by showcasing the variety of opportunities that are available during a career with a city law firm. Both the Grad Rec sessions and meetings with partners illustrated the different paths available within the firm and it was this element of an evolving career that convinced me.


Other Information

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

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

Numerous sessions provided by Grad Rec were attended by employees from across the firm. Particularly helpful was the end of week session and social with the Trainees and the coffee meeting with a Partner from another department. Everyone I met was very willing to chat and answer any of my questions about the firm.


13. How were the networking/ social event opportunities?


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

The firm has numerous socials and clubs focused around sports, team activities, and professional development. The activities seemed to be a very popular way for Trainees to get involved and meet people across the firm. There is also a women's network which runs various events throughout the year which promotes inclusion and diversity in the workplace.


15. Would you recommend this insight to a friend?

I would definitely recommend this placement and firm. There were numerous opportunities to learn more about the firm and meet various employees. As well as being an informative experience, the placement was helpful as an immersive experience. The small number of participants in the placement was excellent as well for fostering a positive atmosphere and making it a genuinely enjoyable experience.