DLA Piper has put 251 staff in consultation in one of the biggest rounds of redundancies yet in the UK legal market’s recent spate of layoffs.
The firm has confirmed it is considering closing its Glasgow office, its defendant insurance practice and bringing into one place its document production unit following a review of its UK operations.
It follows the hire of Tony Angel as senior partner late last year (26 October 2011), with the former Linklaters managing partner carrying a review of the UK business aimed at cutting out wastage (1 June 2012).
A DLA Piper spokesperson said in a statement: “Following a comprehensive review of our UK business designed to ensure that we are operating in a manner, in the locations, and across the practice areas that support both our strategic objectives and the needs of our clients, we have begun a period of consultation in the UK that will consider the possible closure of our Glasgow office, the closure or divestment of our defendant insurance practice and the consolidation into one location of our current multi-site document production unit.”
The consultation process puts 116 jobs at risk in document production, plus 85 employees in Glasgow and a further 50 in defendant insurance, totalling 227.51 full-time equivalent jobs.
A detailed plan of the exercise released by the firm states that the consultation in the defendant insurance, document production and Glasgow units will begin on 28 November and completed “early in the new year”.
It also highlights an “enhanced scheme that will be discussed with employee representatives” as the redundancy package and says there could be staff transfers to Edinburgh.
The plan for the defendant insurance unit is a going concern transfer, while the process in the document production unit could see employees transferred to Leeds, where the firm says vacancies will be available.
The firm said: “We are establishing a consultation forum which enables the DPU [document production unit] teams in all offices to participate in the consultation process as we believe it is fairer for all DPU teams to be extended the same privileges, irrespective of numbers.”
The exercise does not include trainees, the firm also confirmed.