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Hesketh left her role as London head of HR of Freshfields a year ago. She will start her new role at Salans next week. She will be charged with developing a global HR strategy and look after secondments, graduate training, benefits, lateral hires as well as the firm's corporate social responsibility.
The individual offices of Salans used to be responsible for their own HR policies before the creation of the global HR role.
All local HR managers will now report into Hesketh. She will also fill in as local HR chief for the firm's smaller offices where there is no local head.
The creation of the global HR role at Salans comes at a time of international expansion for the firm. This month Salans launched an office in Hong Kong and applied for a licence to practice in Beijing.
Neil Woodcock, Salans' chief operating officer, said: "Our partners have always coached, mentored and developed their lawyers, working closely with local HR teams across our offices."
"But with sustained growth and so much of our work truly international in nature, we have recognised the need to have someone bring together the various facets across the attract-develop-retain spectrum."