Hammonds has introduced an incentive scheme to reward lawyer loyalty, requiring longer notice periods from departing staff as a result.
The ‘promotion scheme’ sees new notice periods for associates of four months, with junior lawyers expected to give three months and senior associates five.
Patricia Walsh, an HR director at the firm, said the extension of notice periods was part of an overall rewards package that a working group made up of lawyers came up with.
“At no point was the extension of notice anything to do with attrition rates at the firm,” explained Walsh. “In fact our attrition rate for assistants is at 7 per cent, which I’d consider not too bad in the currently competitive climate.
“Of course we continue to look at ways in which we can hold on to more of our assistants and the promotion scheme is part of that, as we’ve enhanced the terms for our lawyers.”
The scheme also offers lawyers more holidays as they move up the career ladder. Junior lawyers will start on 25 days, with associates receiving 26 days and senior associates 27 days.
There will also be higher potential bonuses and other benefits.
A separate statement from the firm on the promotion scheme said: “Clearly such an arrangement represents a higher level of commitment from the firm to the individual, as well as from the individual to the firm.
“Individuals are not obliged to accept promotion. The new career ladder and enhanced terms have been well received by fee-earners and to date we have not had anyone turn down the offer of promotion.”