CMS Cameron McKenna, Nabarro and Olswang reveal combined pre-merger spring retention score of 76%

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By Thomas Connelly on

Four new associates will be on fixed-term contracts

CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang has revealed an overall spring retention score, just over a month before the three law firms officially join forces.

The soon-to-be firm — which confirmed merger plans back in October 2016 — has announced that from a combined 45-strong March qualifying cohort, 34 fresh-faced associates have put pen to paper on permanent deals. With four other CMS-trained lawyers on fixed-term contracts, this equates to a 76% spring result.

Commenting on today’s outcome, Penelope Warne, a senior partner at CMS, said:

Attracting and retaining the best people is crucial to the success of our business and we want to ensure that our talented people are provided with the best opportunities to progress. I am also pleased to see the vast number of practice and sector groups that our NQs have been welcomed into which demonstrates the strength of our growing areas.

Looking at the firms on an individual basis, CMS Cameron McKenna — which Legal Cheek revealed back in November was offering future trainees as much as £10,000 to defer their training contracts — chalked up a score of 64%. From a trainee intake of 28, the global outfit confirmed 22 had opted to stay put (78%). However, with only 18 of these on permanent deals, this gives CMS a final rate of just 64%.

Nabarro — which offers around 20 training contracts annually — was the top performer of the trio, retaining all nine of its newly qualified (NQ) lawyers (100%).

Olswang, with the smallest qualifying cohort of all three firms, posted a solid 88% result. In a spring round that has seen just eight lawyers qualify, only one NQ headed for the exit.

CMS was a very strong performer in Legal Cheek’s 2016 Trainee & Junior Lawyer Survey. Racking up A*s for secondment opportunities and office, the international outfit received A grades for training, peer support, quality of work, partner approachability, perks and its canteen. Nabarro and Olswang, not to be outdone, were also awarded As for training, quality of work, peer support and partner approachability.

Earlier today CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang confirmed it would axe around 300 support staff ahead of the trio’s 1 May merger. In a joint statement issued by the firms, a spokesperson said:

We can confirm that the consultation process for our business services and secretarial teams has now concluded. Of the 950 support staff across our three firms including outsourced service providers, 650 staff have been offered roles in the new firm.

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