I found the week long placement I undertook really enjoyable. I managed to get exposure to a variety of legal work whilst placed in the Corporate department. A highlight for me was being given the opportunity to write up the stock transfer forms for a deal worth $1.4bn.
Everyone in the office was very friendly and people actively went out of their way to ensure I had a proper insight in to both the firm and the type of work that they undertook on a daily basis. There is a complete lack of hierarchical structure which gives a refreshingly laid back feel to the office environment. This also made it easier for me to interact with staff who all showed a real interest in to how my placement was going and to what stage I was at in the application process.
As iterated above, people (of all levels) were willing to go out of their way to make sure I had a proper idea of the firm and their work. Moreover, whenever I was tasked with something, everyone always finished off their request with "If you need any advice or help just ask", making me feel very supported. Aside from members of staff on the office floor checking how I was doing, I was regularly emailed by the graduate recruitment team to keep track of how I was doing and ask if I had any questions.
Personally, I felt like I actually learned a lot about how 'deals' get done. Moreover, I feel like I have at least a basic knowdlege of Company Law now having been given a descriptive brief at the start of the week. Hopefully, getting an insight in to the practical application of certain aspects of law will hold me in good stead going in to my final year in the sense that I have a better understanding of how things would actually pan out in a real world scenario.
There was not really a set structure to the week long placement. That said, I think this was a good thing as it gave room for me to be set actual legal work by various people, from partners to trainees. There were set tasks to do for graduate recruitment throughout the week with some having deadlines. This gave the week some structure but also provided some leway for other work. The week sort of culminated in me having to give a presentation to 3 members of staff in the style of a business pitch, selling the firm to a potential client. I thought it was quite useful in making you really research the firm through their online resources. Moreover, it allowed me to show off my personality through it being quite an informal affair.
The atmosphere was completely free of superciliousness and people were very down to earth. As mentioned, everybody was friendly and welcoming and the fact that I got invited to the office Summer Party was a great opportunity to get to know people in a more informal setting.
A lot of different people took at least some time out of their schedule to ensure that I was getting on alright. In terms of actual investment in to my personal development, the placement wasn't really long enough for me to say that they ivnested in me.
I feel that the reality of working at Shoosmiths would be definitely different from my placement, however, getting a base knowdledge of the culture and atmosphere was a good start.
The 4 core values of the company are emphasised a lot, also, just from day to day in the office you get a good impression of the company culture.
From the level of work I was exposed to, despite being a placement student, I have decided that a career as a solicitor in a firm of this type is definitely for me.
I was paid £250 for the week.
Yes. Aside from the day to day relaxed theme in the office, I was invited to the office Summer party which gave a great chance for networking.
Stellar. Free Fish and Chips.
Yes, very much so.
Insight / Vacation Scheme (< 4 Weeks)
Corporate Law, Legal/Law
17th July 2015