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Stephenson Harwood boosts trainee lawyer pay as it becomes latest firm to allow working from home

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An extra £1,000 chucked at NQs too

Stephenson Harwood has chucked modest pay increases at its trainees and junior lawyers, as it becomes the latest City outfit to implement a ‘home-desking’ policy.

The firm, which offers 18 training contract positions annually, has upped first year trainee pay from £38,500 to £40,000 (4%), while those a year ahead will now receive £44,000 rather than £42,500 (4%). Wedge for newly qualified (NQ) lawyers has been nudged 2% from £65,000 to £66,000.

Stephenson Harwood confirmed to Legal Cheek that trainee pay rises are effective from September, while new NQ salaries were introduced last month.

Legal Cheek’s 2017 Most List shows that Stephenson Harwood’s NQs are now £1,000 better off than their counterparts at Dentons and Osborne Clarke, and £2,000 ahead of junior lawyers at Eversheds Sutherland (£64,000). Sitting just above Stephenson Harwood on the NQ pay scale is CMS, which pays its London associates £67,500.

The pay increases come in the same week Stephenson Harwood officially joined the flexi-working movement.

Following a successful trial last year, the firm has confirmed its London lawyers will now be able to take advantage of a new flexible working initiative, which will allow them to work from home one day per week. Support staff will also be able to work from home, albeit on a reduced offering of one day per fortnight.

However, the scheme will not be open to all. Lawyers “whose physical presence in the office is an integral part of their role” will still be expected to brave the morning rush hour. The outfit has confirmed to Legal Cheek that trainees are not able to take advantage of the policy due to supervision requirements.

Commenting on the roll out, Stephenson Harwood’s chief executive, Sharon White, said:

We recognise the importance of creating a working environment that encourages individual productivity and operational efficiency. Attracting and retaining the very best talent remains a priority, and implementing this scheme enables us to provide employees with more flexibility without compromising client work.”

The news follows similar policies introduced by a large number of City firms over the past year or so.

In April, global outfit Reed Smith implemented an agile working initiative which allows its lawyers to work away from the office and operate on flexible hours. This followed comparable schemes by, among others, Macfarlanes, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, White & Case, Shearman & Sterling and Herbert Smith Freehills.

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28 Comments

Anonymous

Home-desking aka being allowed to go home for a ready meal dinner before logging back on at home afterwards.

(10)(2)

Anonymous

I’ll always loathe this firm after going there for a training contract interview in 2008 or 2009 and, after obviously having a speech impediment and struggling a bit during the process, was told by one of the people interviewing me that “we couldn’t put you in front of clients”. Classy.

I should have called them up on it or taken it further, but I was just so stunned and it would of course been my word against theirs.

(16)(3)

Anonymous

Who was the interviewer? Was it HR or a partner?

(2)(0)

Anonymous

I believe it was someone who was an ex-partner, but who was then in a HR role.

Probably not an ex-employment lawyer.

(1)(1)

Anonymous

You dick.

(0)(0)

Anonymous

Top bantz.

(0)(0)

Jones Day (Female) Partner

Quite sure your stutter can be useful somewhere

(3)(2)

Anonymous

?

(1)(0)

Anonymous

Any news on Freshfields?

(5)(0)

Anonymous

Apparently next year it will increase – fingers crossed

(0)(0)

Anonymous

A very good source of mine claims they’re going for £100k NQ. Blowing out all MC competition, showing who’s boss.

(12)(4)

Anonymous

Troll?

(7)(0)

Anonymous

Nope.

(1)(1)

Anonymous

Is this actually true?

(0)(0)

Anonymous

No.

(0)(0)

Anonymous

Yes no wage increases as they have to keep PEP high to avoid losing their best partners to US outfits.

(3)(0)

Anonymous

Even for trainees?

(0)(1)

Anonymous

Just wait ’till that CMS trainee retention rate is published.

(4)(2)

Anonymous

>50% is my guess. It’ll be nasty.

(1)(1)

CMS Trainee

Where are you getting this from?

(2)(0)

Anonymous

Less than 20% – internal sources

(1)(1)

Anonymous

For those leaving presumably it’s easy enough to get something else.

Anonymous

Yep, NQ roles at Irwin Mitchell and DWF are aplenty no doubt. Step right up.

Anonymous

Don’t forget about Fieldfisher, they take anyone

Anonymous

What about AG?

(1)(0)

Anonymous

You mean the titan among City firms, a top shop everyone wants to bag a TC with, the mighty Saddleshaw Goddard?

(1)(1)

Anonymous

What about Eversheds?

(1)(0)

Neversheds

ROFL.

(0)(2)

Comments are closed.