A&O retention rates plummet to 72 per cent

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  • I do not like London. I lived there for a few months and have also done work experience at a couple of city firms and I hated it. For me personally, being down south, at a firm close to the sea, so I can continue to sail, being able to drive to work and park for free, and afford a much bigger house than I could in London, appeals to me and I get to work with pretty good international clients. Perhaps the deals I work on will be more like £10m rather than £100m but its a matter of personal choice - this does not make me any worse a lawyer than a city counterpart.

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  • Wow someone clearly doesn't have a life or a very engaging job if s/he has time to write such long and, frankly, narrow minded comments! For your information, I have had better considerably better training than a lot of my friends at magic circle firms i.e. I have actually done “real” work, as opposed to being stuck by the photocopier or preparing bibles all day. Also, I know people who were not kept on at qualification simply because they would not compromise on location or department, rather than because they were not very good. Life is not black or white, and the best lawyers are certainly not all found at A&O (although, a certain type definitely is…). Oh, and btw, I could have gone to magic circle firm, but chose to go elsewhere.

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  • This story is misleading. Over 50 NQ positions were offered - the firm needs new cannon fodder because it's constantly losing associates at around 2-3PQE. Around 6-8 trainees chose not to apply for a job at all, and the rest of the leavers are people who weren't offered their first choice. A lot of these are from litigation where 17 trainees applied for 5 jobs. The unlucky 12 would rather sign on than head to the trenches and fight the tediously dull all-night document production battles of ICM, Banking and Corporate.

    It's true that the firm has just sacked a load of support staff, er, sorry, offered them relocation to Belfast, and is cutting the number of trainees it will take on in over the next 4 years, but there is no shortage of NQ jobs. It is a damning reflection of life as an A&O trainee that well over a quarter are moving on to pastures new.

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  • @ lawyer2bee

    Southampton by any chance?

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  • Reggie Bush fails to grasp this:

    1.Slaughter & May, 59 trainee solicitors, 100% retention rate

    2. A&O, 53 trainee solicitors, 72% refresh rate.

    One of the following reasons must explain the discrepancy:

    (a) A&O is more choosy than Slaughter's when it comes to newly qualifieds: Reggie might believe this given, how 'special' he is and thinks A&O is;

    (b) Slaughter's got their initial recuritment of trainees right while A&O picked up 25% chumps (in which case, it speaks poorly of the skills of the 'special' A&O recruitment partners);

    (c) A&O is doing badly and its estimated qualification spaces turned out to be far less than what it actually had available when the trainees ultimately qualified; or

    (d) the trainees felt, just as Reggie clearly does, that A&O was a bit 'special' and decided to pursue other options instead.

    So help me Reggie, what do you think REALLY happened.

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  • @Whatyougonnado
    There is actually a fifth option. Slaughter & May recruit the majority of their candidates from Oxbridge and the very best of the Russell Group universities. Hence, Slaughter & May's 100% retention rate. Allen & Overy often recruit from some no-mark universities to satisfy the diversity mob. This would explain why 28% did not make the cut. After all, one cannot really turn lead into gold. The lesson to be learnt here is that Allen & Overy should stop trying to be politically correct and instead recruit the best candidates from Oxbridge and LSE.

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