The Legal Cheek View
Liverpool's global law firm has had a tough time of late, but Hill Dickinson remains a huge player in the North West legal market with particular strengths in litigation and insurance work. The firm has been hit by turbulence in these practice areas, as it tries to strengthen in areas like real estate and fraud, with revenues falling over the last couple of years and the most recently released profit per equity partner figure down 4% to £261,000.
What this translates to for trainees and junior lawyers at Hill Dickinson is wages at the lower end of the corporate law spectrum (see below). Of course, the cost of living is much lower in Liverpool and Manchester than it is in London. And hours are much shorter, with most of Hill Dickinson's junior solicitors out of the door by 6:30pm.
Where the firm falls down on is perks. There is no canteen, the coffee is "awful" ("for an extra few pence they could buy the 'gold' version of the brand but they don't," reports one insider) and firm-organised social events are relatively rare. And although the Liverpool office is generally deemed pretty impressive, the Manchester and Sheffield ones are less so, while Hill Dicks' presence in London is fairly small.
On the upside, there are some decent international secondments on offer at the firm's offices in Piraeus, Singapore, Monaco and Hong Kong. However, only 14% of the Hill Dickinson rookies surveyed by Legal Cheek had done one or spent time abroad while on the job.
Still, in the wider context of the UK legal market, there's no doubt that this is a decent firm at which to start your career, with solid training scores and a generally supportive culture. Given a bit more love from up high, Hill Dicks' lawyers will surely start smiling again.