The Legal Cheek View
White & Case has grown rapidly in London of late, increasing the number of training contracts it offers from 30 to 50 in just two years as it bids to go head-to-head with the magic circle. The financials are looking rosy too, with figures released in 2016 showing the corporate finance-focused US giant to have boosted turnover for its UK and Africa arm by a whopping 39% last year. Revenues now stand at £214.9 million.
For wannabe lawyers, one of White & Case’s biggest selling points has long been money – although in these crazy days of MoneyLaw there are a host of firms which now pay substantially more. The trade-off is long hours, with White & Case one of the lower rated in London for work-life balance. Don’t expect to get out of the office much before 9pm if you are in a corporate or banking seat. One insider sums it up like this:
“[Work-life balance] depends on the department, some parts of the office will be dead by 6.30pm whilst others are bustling until 2am.”
The training is rated highly, as is the work. Reports another W&C rookie: “If you show you are capable of completing simple tasks, associates will try and give you more responsibility with interesting work where possible.” But the wider culture of peer support and partner approachability could be better, receiving 'B' grades in the Legal Cheek Trainee and Junior Lawyer Survey.
Perks are good, with free massages and a canteen that puts on regular “street food pop-ups”. But beware, dinner is “regularly tasteless and unappealing”. And caution should also be exercised around the free vending machines, which are apparently “better left undisturbed”.
Another big White & Case pull factor is its huge international network, with 39 offices in 26 countries. Rookies have an excellent chance of doing a secondment, with some great destinations available. Current London trainees have spent time in, among other places, Stockholm, Hong Kong, Paris, Madrid and Singapore.