Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP) has taken the first steps to overhaul its assistant career path, appointing a career development officer to focus on newly qualified solicitors.
Julie Gottlieb, who was a solicitor at the firm between 1990 and 1997, has been given the task of "enhancing the morale, motivation and development of fee-earners", with a focus on those with up to three years' post-qualification experience (PQE).
In addition to the appointment, BLP is working on overhauling its career development framework and introducing an alternative to partner.
Gottlieb will hold a series of one-to-one confidential meetings with each assistant falling in the PQE range, as well as meeting with assistant work groups.
"In the old days there was no emphasis on career development at all," Gottlieb told The Lawyer. "Now the firm is much more geared up about it.
"Nothing the assistants say goes on any file, and it's designed to be a positive experience for them to get anything off their chest, as well as to identify their strengths and advise on opportunities to make the most of their talents."
A firm spokesman said: "The role is part of BLP's efforts to improve its career development processes across the firm. Since we've set ourselves the goal of providing a better place to work than our competitors, it is a priority for us to be tackling this issue."