Norton Rose Fulbright retains 20 out of 26 autumn qualifying trainees

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Score of 77%

Norton Rose Fulbright has today revealed an autumn 2019 trainee retention score of 77%.

Out of a cohort of 26 rookies due to qualify this month, 20 accepted newly qualified (NQ) solicitor positions at the global outfit’s London headquarters. Norton Rose Fulbright, which offers 45 training contracts each year, confirmed it made 22 offers and received two resignations.

New associates will start on £77,000 — a 52% jump on their second year salaries of £50,500. Our Firms Most List shows City player Taylor Wessing also remunerates NQs £77,000. First year trainees at Norton Rose Fulbright earn £46,500.

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This year’s retention result is a slight drop on last year’s. On that occasion Norton Rose Fulbright posted a score of 90% — holding on to 28 out of 31 juniors. The firm recorded a rate of 95% in spring this year (19 out of 20) and 75% (18 out of 24, plus two on fixed-term contracts) the spring prior.

Norton Rose Fulbright, which is the biggest UK-headquartered law firm outside of the magic circle by revenue, performed well in this year’s Trainee and Junior Lawyer Survey. The international firm notched up A*s for peer support and its swanky riverside office, as well as As for training, quality of work and tech.

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How does NRF get away with paying just £77k at nq? Such tightwads, what a sinking shet ship


Norman Wisdom

NQ salary now 80k. Not announced publicly, presumably as so shet compared with supposedly comparable firms. Definitely lost its way as a firm.


Sweaty toiler

£80k Nq, phat whackkk



Shyte firm with crap trainee development team



Very interesting article. Will forward to my colleagues. Thanks.



I remember attending an open day for this firm. 6 seat training contract, up to 2 secondments, free language classes – as a first year LLB student I thought the world of it.


Norton rose HR

It’s 4 seats



No, it used to be 6 seats.



Aside from all the hate NRF seems to receive on here, what departments are strongest in London?

The firm used to be viewed much more positively a few years ago! Can’t believe it’s all “bad” now…


Norton Expert

Project and Asset Finance are strong. Emerging markets and their work in energy is also really strong. Fairly decent white collar practice. However disputes isn’t the firms focus at the moment.

Did vac scheme there, friendly firm, probably offer some of the best secondment opportunities (every trainee I met had the opportunity to go wherever they Wishes except for one with visa issues) and nice office. Not the sort of place I would want to stay at post 3PQ though, firm felt very bloated and unclear on its strategy



Grad Rec take years to respond to applications (for both acceptance and rejection). Shet work ethic


CMS Banking

How is CMS still paying 73k on NQ? Thank god I am leaving.



Rofl dont kid yourself son, ur not going anywhere from CMS



You don’t know shet. From CMS is perfectly doable.


US 2pqe

Lmao yeh keep kidding urself bruv



US top whackk will love u



Just noticed a recent NQ on LinkedIn who had moved to Wilkie Farr from Shoosmiths… Goes to show anything is possible in this career



HOLY FUCK epic lateral moe


Whats a Willkie Farrrr ???


Moved to K&E PE from CMS and what. So have other members of my intake.



you’re still a 2nd tier lawyer; doesn’t matter where you go.



Will NRF take me wit ABB?



They won’t, but I can give u de BBC if u liek


Calm Down

I think it is slightly hyperbolic to say that a firm’s NQ salary is determinative of whether it has ‘lost its way’ or not – training remains excellent and secondment opportunities are ace. At the same time, however, it is curious that they do not want to maintain a competitive salary given that up until last year they were up there with the MC.



Shite firm – only a small handful from my 2017 qualifying intake remain. The grass is greener as the rest of us found out. Abysmal trainee development staff.


Norton rose Future trainee

What was so abysmal?


Norton rose Current trainee

The canteen food…every day is a struggle


Was at NRF

An OK place to train. A fairly poor place to work as an associate, in my opinion. Generally not respected in many practice areas by those at other firms who know their stuff. As said above, bloated, unclear strategy across the board, and then you have their “people decisions”, meaning not rewarding the small number they have of genuinely brilliant people who go elsewhere; then the weird pushing out of the fairly decent who can do a job, coupled with the rapid advancement of those who play the game internally, but would never even begin to make it anywhere else. More people eventually “found out” than you would expect a top firm to be experiencing, thanks to this approach.

Now, of course, you might say this happens at a lot of places and that would be fairly true, but I must say, I’ve never quite seen or heard of such epic law firm churn to absolute mediocrity that I saw at NRF. They’re apparently fully committed to it. It’s almost an art. And it’s one thing for failing at one place to not affect your career long-term. Happens to many of us. It’s another to think that succeeding at a place meant nothing in the wider world too and wouldn’t translate absolutely anywhere else at all. That’s how NRF feels.

There’s also an odd atmosphere created by the overwhelming number of support and marketing, etc staff who contribute little internally or externally but who are given job titles and power way beyond their capabilities. Aside from the fact some of these people are even let loose on faintly horrified clients, it almost feels like the you know, lawyers in the firm are working to support this huge extra company on the side that’s out of control and just overhead.

No bitterness on my part by the way, I went to a US firm where at least I could see some evidence why people “make it” or not (and it’s not attending the latest internal training course).


Former NRF

I heard it’s a resignation a day over there ? Is this still true ?


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