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Hogan Lovells to cut 90 London support staff as roles move to Birmingham and Johannesburg

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In the same month Pinsent Masons revealed up to 100 PA jobs could go

Johannesburg

International heavyweight Hogan Lovells has revealed that up to 90 London support roles could be cut or moved as part of a restructuring of its UK operations.

Around 78 business services roles and 12 legal support positions will be slashed from the international firm’s London office, or transferred to its business services hubs in Birmingham and Johannesburg, South Africa. The consultation process opened yesterday (18 September) with London staff who are affected and whose postions are likely to be relocated.

Commenting on the changes ahead, Hogan Lovells’ deputy chief executive, David Hudd, said:

This is part of our strategy to evolve our firm so it continues to meet our business needs as well as those of our clients in a rapidly changing and highly competitive market. We are fully committed to ensuring that our people are treated fairly and are fully supported throughout this process.

Hogan Lovells’ Johannesburg outpost currently employs around 110 staff in areas including marketing, finance, technology, and business development. Meanwhile, its Birmingham counterpart — which took on its first trainee lawyers in 2016 — is home to roughly 70 employees. Both hubs opened in 2014.

The back-office overhaul comes just over a week after fellow international player Pinsent Masons revealed up to 100 personal assistant (PA) jobs could disappear.

Legal Cheek understands that the consultation will review PA positions across all eleven of its UK offices, including London, on a department-by-department basis. Staff affected will be eligible to apply for one of the outfit’s 50 new administrative assistant roles that will be created.

Pinsents’ and Hogan Lovells’ PA reviews follow similar moves by Anglo-German giant Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer and insurance specialist BLM.

Freshfields offered voluntary redundancy to all 180 or so of its London support staff earlier this year, while BLM confirmed last month it was cutting 50 secretarial and support roles following a summer consultation.

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