HR survey: Herbert Smith

HR head
John Lucy.

Trainee retention rate
85 per cent.

Assistant attrition rate
19.75 per cent.

NQ – £50,000;
6PQE: £62,000-£90,000.

Offered annually on hitting chargeable hours target. Value range 5 to 20 per cent.

Continuing professional development sessions, development centre, in-house training courses.

Appraisals are 360°. An assistants’ discussion group of elected assistants has recently been established, chaired by a partner. Views are fed back to the people policy group, chaired by the executive partner, who has the power to take appropriate action.

Partner progression
Seventy-nine per cent home-grown and 32 laterals. Youngest partner 30. Partner selection begins with business case, followed by panel interview, technical assessment and vote.

Billable hours target
1,700 for assistants.

Flexible and part-time working

Holiday entitlement
Twenty-seven days.

Family private medical insurance, profit share 5 per cent plus bonus up to 20 per cent, pension (all levels), permanent health insurance, travel season ticket loans, life insurance, concierge.