Osborne Clarke chalks up 95% trainee retention result

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19 out of 20

Osborne Clarke has posted an impressive retention score of 95%. Of the 20 trainees who qualified this autumn, 19 secured associate positions at the international outfit.

The newly qualified (NQ) lawyers, who start on a salary of £71,000 in London, join practices including commercial, corporate, real estate, banking, projects and disputes.

Legal Cheek’s 2020 Firms Most List shows those starting NQ life in the firm’s Reading office will receive a salary of £54,000, while their counterparts in Bristol will earn £52,000.

Ray Berg, UK managing partner, said: “Congratulations to each and every one of our newly qualified solicitors. It’s been fantastic following their progress. We want to retain as much of our top talent as possible, and we make sure that we are continually improving the experience we offer trainees by taking on board their feedback.”

Event: The global economy of the 2020s - with Osborne Clarke Thursday 7 November

Osborne Clarke, which offers 20 training contracts each year, performed well in this year’s Trainee and Junior Lawyer Survey, notching up an impressive five A*s in categories including training, quality of work, partner approachability.

Earlier this month, Osborne Clarke revealed it had joined forces with the University of Bristol to create a new lawtech-focused vacations scheme. The new programme, dubbed ‘Legal and Emerging Tech Vacation Scheme’, has already seen six students complete a two-week placement earlier this summer in the firm’s Bristol office.

The 2020 Legal Cheek Firms Most List



Are the hours in corporate teams at a shop like this sufficiently laid-back to justify the “lower” NQ rate?



No, when a deal is on you grind grind grind. The “lower” NQ rate is reflective of the highest hourly rate their clients will accept from a firm like OC. There are plenty of firms with London offices that bill partners out at the same rate as MC firm NQs. If your firm is charging you out at £200 an hour there’s no way at all you’ll make 6 figures.



Osborne Clarke is one of those firms that I have genuinely never heard any bad things about. Does anyone have any opinions that would go against this? I’d be keen to know.


Angus, Exeter University LL.B.

Go to FF instead/



I trained and qualified at OC and then moved to a US firm. OC’s a better place to train. People are friendlier, the work done across the office is more varied and the learning & development is more structured. Don’t have a bad word to say about OC.



54k in Reading is a decent salary

71k in Central London isn’t



Only if the work is comparable to Reading firms… if you’re still doing London work and deals – particularly when alongside a London NQ, it’s massively underpaid!


OC Trainee

I’m currently a trainee at OC- my preference is qualifying into construction. Duane Morris seem to be growing their construction offering, does anybody no their NQ rate?



Unfunny. F*ck off mate


Duane Morris HR

It will be a “know” from us. Please do not apply again. We are not grateful for your interest in the Firm.

We hope you will consider another profession choice.



$190k…same as all elite US firms.



Utter bollox mate. Piss off with your lies


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