Norton Rose associates are to be split into three ranks as the firm becomes the latest to scrap the pegging of pay to PQE levels.
In the February and March associate appraisals the firm will introduce a merit-based system where associates will be graded one to three.
Only level three will result in an externally visible promotion to senior associate level, but those who are promoted from the first to the second level are expected to be around three to five years’ PQE and “will achieve a not insignificant payrise”, said London managing partner Deirdre Walker.
One senior associate said: “People are excited by the fact that they’ll be rewarded by the quality of their work rather than how many years they’ve been working.”
Assessment for the grading will consider five core competencies: the development and application of technical knowledge and skills; efficiency; business development; teamwork; and ‘good citizenship’.