Eversheds_office.jpg” alt=”Eversheds” />Eversheds is bucking the trend in trainee recruitment by radically overhauling its online application form to make it fairer for those from non-traditional backgrounds.

The new application form will no longer automatically reject candidates who do not meet the firm’s minimum academic criteria. It will instead take into account both academic achievements as well as relevant work experience and give the candidate a score.

This is a sea change for the legal sector, where it is not uncommon for an online form to automatically reject an application because a candidate does not meet a firm’s minimum academic criteria.

“Only looking at applicants who have a 2:1 and great A levels cuts out a lot of candidates who would make great lawyers but who have had differing educational experiences,” says Kerry Reed, graduate recruitment and development manager at Eversheds.

Previously, Eversheds’ minimum academic requirements were 300 Ucas points, the equivalent of three Bs at A level and a 2:1, although the firm did accept applications from candidates with lower grades if they had extenuating circumstances.

Eversheds has also increased the pass threshold for the verbal reasoning test that candidates must complete at the application process.