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Clifford Chance offers tech-focused ‘vac scheme’ to future trainees

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Includes crash courses in coding and data analytics

Magic circle player Clifford Chance has developed a tech-focused internship for some of its future trainees, teaming up with London start-up Lexoo.

The aspiring City lawyers will spend two months working alongside staff at Lexoo, gaining exposure across the start-up’s product, marketing, business development and operations functions. Lexoo, an online legal marketplace, will also provide the firm’s soon-to-be rookies with crash courses in coding and data analytics.

The internship, still in its pilot stage, kicked off last month with an initial cohort of just two. Both future trainees were selected from Clifford Chance’s 2017 Springboard programme, a scheme designed to attract top first-year students through its doors. The interns will receive a weekly salary of £450 — the same as students on the firm’s summer vac scheme programme.

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Commenting on the new partnership, Clifford Chance’s head of graduate recruitment, Laura Yeates, said:

“With innovation firmly on the agenda in the boardroom, we are pleased that this investment is being seen at every level of the firm from partners to future trainees. The legal industry is evolving with new challenges and new opportunities. In order to give our clients the best service today and in the future, we are committed to ensuring our lawyers have the skills needed for a successful career.”

The firm’s new vac scheme-style offering comes just weeks after it launched a global programme to help its lawyers gain a better understanding of tricky tech topics including coding and blockchain. The initiative, ‘Tech Academy’, aims to encourage Clifford Chance’s lawyers to become more tech-savvy through a combination of online learning and face-to-face workshops.

But Clifford Chance isn’t the only magic circle player to launch a tech-focused initiative.

In March, Allen & Overy (A&O) unveiled a law tech graduate recruitment scheme which mimics the two-year, four-seat structure of a training contract. At the time, A&O said it was seeking candidates who “ideally” have science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) degrees, or economics degrees. Successful participants will receive a recognised qualification in project or process management.

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4 Comments

Love the Law, Hate Solicitors

“The aspiring City lawyers will spend two months working alongside staff at Lexoo, gaining exposure across the start-up’s product, marketing, business development and operations functions. Lexoo, an online legal marketplace, will also provide the firm’s soon-to-be rookies with crash courses in coding and data analytics.”

Basically more about how to sell the tech than actually using it.

“Ooh look I can use this perfectly crafted interface built by actual programmers and click a few buttons crafted by UI/UX experts and call myself a guru in data analytics..”

“Ooh look I can build a web page and write a trivial rolling-dice game on Python, I can code now!”

This is pretentiousness at its finest, and I expected no less from the pseudo-“thought leaders / forward thinkers” that is CC.

Heck even salespeople use analytics platforms and are better versed in HTML but you don’t see them touting it off like it’s an achievement.

(37)(3)

Anonymous

^ Angry_Neckbeard_2018 has joined the conversation.

Seriously though, this line: “Basically more about how to sell the tech than actually using it.”

That’s the point. They’re lawyers, not programmers and the idea isn’t to become the latter. It appears to be designed to actually help them understand what their clients might doing a little better (whether it or the A&O equivalent succeed or not is another matter), and isn’t actually pretending to be anything else.

(2)(10)

Love the Innovators, Hate the Solicitors

You’re missing the nuance.

If the point was just to invest in tech so that it improves their work and their relationship with clients, that’s fine and it’s something that many companies do. This is not what CC et al are trying to do. They are giving the terribly false impression that their future lawyers will gain competence in the tech they are using; which is the ONLY reason why they would publicize this instead of simply sticking to the simple “we’re investing in innovation” slogan.

Training lawyers to /use/ software is one thing. Masquerading that as programmatic ability is another (evidenced by the “coding” lessons which is entirely superfluous for the former).

But, by all means, you’re free to continue rationalizing in cloudcuckooland.

(15)(0)

TheAcresOfFour

Another instance in which the style and appearance of an initiative is more important than the substance and actual achievement resulting therefrom.

(2)(0)

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