The Legal Cheek View
It has been another good year for Simmons & Simmons. Profit per equity partner (PEP) and revenue have both risen for a second consecutive year; the former up 8% to £686,000 and the latter by 12% to £354 million. The firm’s finance, healthcare and technology practices have apparently had particularly good years. The boost in growth has come despite the investment involved in opening a new Dublin office in the spring of this year.
Simmons puts in a solid performance in the Legal Cheek Trainee and Junior Lawyer Survey 2018-19. With trainee retention rates bouncing back strongly from a difficult patch a few years ago, the junior end of the firm seems like a happy ship again. Indeed, with an A* for peer supportiveness this year, it’s positively bouncing! As one rookie puts it: “The people I work with are a pleasure to have as colleagues. They are very supportive; being both able and willing to listen.”
At partner level the vibe is a bit more formal but similarly friendly. “The firm doesn’t like to be known as ‘nice’ but it really is,” one insider admits. Doubtless that improved PEP has boosted the mood. Be warned though that even the most human of partners can lose their approachability when “under the cosh to get something done”.
The training remains very good. “I’ve had a lot of responsibility and feel like my training has been incredibly comprehensive throughout,” one rookie reports. And the work is also decent. One trainee sums it up like this: “Honestly a really good standard of work. Lots of “cutting edge” *groan* research, drafting, running calls, corresponding with counsel. Senior people seek your input and involve you in meetings. Good stuff, no complaints.” But hours can vary wildly. “At times, it’s past midnight every night for months. At times, it’s 6pm most nights for months,” we are told.