Taylor Wessing keeps 17 out of 22 qualifying trainees as Jones Day declines to comment on reports of disappointing retention result

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London office of US firm goes all shy


Anglo-German law firm Taylor Wessing has posted a trainee retention rate of 77%, announcing that it will give full-time solicitor jobs to 17 out of 22 trainees who are due to qualify this autumn.

The result represents a ten percentage point drop on the firm’s retention figure for this time last year, when it kept 87% of trainees. But it still falls well within the range of respectability for a mid-tier player that is subject to recruitment raids for new qualifiers by magic circle and US firms.

The same can’t be said of the 68% trainee retention rate that the London office of Jones Day is reported to have announced internally.

Mystery shrouds the future of the US firm’s trainees due to qualify in the UK capital as Jones Day has seemingly severed communications with the legal press.

The firm — which takes on 20 trainees a year — is not responding to Legal Cheek‘s calls to verify a report in the blogosphere that it was “trying to keep a lid on its paltry 60-something-% retention rate.” We understand that the precise figure is 68%.

Returning to Taylor Wessing, the firm tells us that its qualifying trainees will be spread across various teams including disputes, banking & finance, corporate, employment, tech, intellectual property & media and competition.

Tim Worden, one of the firm’s graduate recruitment partners, made no mention of the departing five trainees as he opted to focus on the positive, commenting:

Taylor Wessing is committed to developing high quality lawyers who will become valuable business advisors to our clients in some of the world’s most exciting and cutting-edge sectors. Each trainee has benefited from excellent legal and commercial training, as well as regular support and feedback during their training contracts with the firm, and we are delighted to be retaining them.


Bored trainee

I can’t wait until my training contract is over and I can quit law forever.


I feel you

I feel you…….






You’ve convinced me not to spend my weekend firing off last ditch TC attempts



I’m a 5 years PQE high street solicitor, and I would love to quit law forever. I just don’t know what to do otherwise?

I think I’m institutionalised 😔



Why would a private concern be required to comment on the number of apprentices it has retained? What is this, Soviet Russia?



It isn’t, but when it refuses to release the figure at all it suggests the figure isn’t one to be proud of.



I agree, though, that this article overeggs it a bit



The object of a law practice is to generate profit for its partners, not to generate warm fuzzy feels.



Heh, looks like the Jones Day muppet house is finally on its way out.



Whats so bad about Jones Day that trainees are leaving? (Genuine question)



Nothing bad. Just doesn’t talk to the legal press….. which upsets them. Retention rates are actually pretty good.



Looks like JonesDay’s HR paid us a visit.


Sydney Darlinghurst

Zero staff morale; lack of any quality work; below market pay; vile ‘laddish’ work culture; long hours – the list goes on.

Friends who did trained at JD also said the current ‘open rotational’ system is just a synonym for near-complete anarchy, where only someone with their head up somebody senior’s arse gets ahead.



Don’t forget the ongoing haemorrhage of partners and staff.

There won’t be anyone left in this shop by the end of the year if it continues the way it did so far.


Rupert the Laddington Bear

I work at Jones Day and whilst I don’t get paid as much as at a US firm, the banter more than makes up for it.

This post has been moderated because it breached Legal Cheek’s comments policy.


Osburn von Laddington

Hear hear rah rah



That is actually shockingly spot on.


Banta Claus

Wot a lad! Such epic bantz!

This post has been moderated because it breached Legal Cheek’s comments policy.



Maximum bantaaaaaah!!!



Hahah, LC censoring comments once again. What a bunch of weak flogs.



I’m still surprised that TW is able to keep its retention numbers that high given its strange mix of great training and laughable NQ salaries. In a good year most TW trainees would be offered NQ salaries that are at least 40% higher than at their firm.



Agreed. It is a lovely place to work though.



That’s true, it is a very, very nice place to work, probably the nicest corporate law firm in the city.



“Mid-tier player that is subject to recruitment raids for new qualifiers by magic circle and US firms.”

Lol as if.



It’s true lateral hires are lucrative since you don’t invest much in training.


Future trainee

You reckon this would be possible from an outfit like TaylorWessing?

Genuine question btw.



Yes, you’d be surprised the laterals that end up at places like Latham.

Bottom line is at NQ level, most MC trainees won’t want to leave, so US firms will look further down the table. Have a browse on Linkedin, people from regional shops ending up at Latham or W&C.



These days even midtiers are full of oxbridge grads, plus they do tend to delegate more work to trainees.


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