Travers Smith boosts trainee numbers by a third

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From 30 TCs to a maximum of 40

City law firm Travers Smith has increased the number of trainee solicitors it recruits each year by a third.

The firm revealed it will take on a maximum of 40 rookies annually, up 33% from 30. The numbers will increase in line with the September 2023 and March 2024 trainee intakes, Travers said in a statement.

The Legal Cheek Firms Most List 2022 shows Travers now offers the same number of training contracts as fellow silver circle member Ashurst, and five more than Osborne Clarke. Magic Circle player Linklaters is the largest TC provider with 100.

In terms of cash, Travers’ rookies earn £50,000 in year one and £55,000 in year two. Pay for newly qualified associates currently sits at £100,000.

Commenting on the increase in trainee numbers, Travers managing partner Edmund Reed said: “I am delighted to announce that from September we will be increasing our trainee cohort to support our expanding business. This is our largest trainee intake to date which reflects the confidence we have in the future of our business as we continue to grow and invest in it.”

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He continued:

“Travers Smith is a vibrant and dynamic firm, with superb clients and a terrific team of highly skilled lawyers and business services professionals. It is a fantastic place to work — with our people at the heart of everything we do. The firm has continued to go from strength to strength and to complement this, we’re thrilled to be taking on more trainees than ever before.”

Last summer fellow City player CMS hit headlines when it became the second highest training contract provider in the UK, upping its annual rookie by 25% to 95.

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Magic Roundabout

Bold seeing as recession around the corner. Interested to hear colleagues’ thoughts on the effect of looming recession on incoming trainees/juniors. Do you think the bubble will burst and pay/intakes will be lowered?



In 2008/9 firms were hesitant to let go of talent. Even Real Estate teams did ok in terms of getting the boot. Firms did have redundancy rounds where they trimmed the fat a bit though. Pay was frozen mainly rather than dropped and future trainees mainly deferred which temporarily lowered trainee numbers. Expect something similar if we go into another recession but obviously not as severe.

One thing I am worried about generally was how quick some firms jumped on the bandwagon of temporarily decreasing salaries across the board during COVID (and having a bumper year) which may be a lot more prevalent in the early days of any recession.


Friend who is an insider

Have heard that Mayer Brown just did pretty huge pay rises – 20kish across all salary bands. Does anyone have any further intel about NQ rates there?


Excite her

Not what I’m hearing (four-figure class bumps rather than a clear increase of bands). Maaaaybe in finance, which pays ahead of the rest of the firm in London anyway, but I haven’t heard about it if they have.


Dispassionate Observer

Latham improved their exchange rate to 1.311 this week (with NQ salaries at £164k). How have Legal Cheek not done an article on this yet?



Those on 95k will be on 100k soon (particularly recent news on the Shed). I wonder if any firm will reach 200k NQ one day?



Of course they will. Akin are nearly there already.


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