Trainee
Recruitment

Our aim is to attract and retain high calibre Trainees who want to work with the best and be the best.

We look for Trainees who not only have keen commercial and technical qualities but those who possess outstanding individual talents and who will also be great team members and future team leaders.

We are well regarded within both the public and private sectors and we have a strong foothold in the social housing arena.

We provide an excellent training platform and are committed to providing our Trainees and all staff with the best environment in which to launch their legal career, fulfil their potential and exceed client expectations.

I have worked at Devonshires for over twenty years and during this time I have seen many trainees develop their skills to become exceptional Solicitors.

As Staff Partner I am responsible for the pastoral care of all staff and this is closely linked with my role as Training Principal. Many of our existing partners started work with us as trainee solicitors or paralegals and I take a keen interest in seeing trainees develop and progress, ensuring that we help them achieve their full potential.

Our trainees benefit from client contact and responsibility right from the get-go, and receive direct supervision and training. This results in well-rounded individuals who are fully prepared for life as a solicitor. It is the depth and breadth of our training contract that sets us apart from many other firms.

Nick Billingham, Partner – Housing Management and Training Principal.

A training contract with us is rewarding and challenging in equal measures. With about 240 employees based in our offices in the City of London, Leeds and Colchester, we can offer a friendly and supportive environment in which to develop your career as a Trainee and future Solicitor. Our size means you will work closely with Partners and Clients from the moment you start with us. This will enable you as a Trainee to quickly develop your skills and knowledge.

Our Trainees are a close knit group and we encourage all our Trainees to take part in the firm’s extra-curricular activities which the firm supports, whether this is firm socials, charity events, trainee socials or sporting events.

We are investing in our future with our Trainees and we are looking to develop you as our future Partners to continue to drive us forward.

We firmly believe we are one of the best places to undertake your training as a Solicitor.

We are a leading law firm based in the City of London with offices in Leeds and Colchester. We provide high quality legal services to our clients.

We use a down-to-earth approach to deliver practical legal advice. Our aim is to achieve outstanding results and strong, lasting relationships.

We are committed to:

Our clients

  • Providing an outstanding service
  • Understanding our clients culture, aims and aspirations
  • Providing leadership to our clients
  • Building long term client relationships at all levels
  • Adding value in everything we do.

Our community

  • Reducing our impact on the environment
  • Becoming the top performing firm of our size in the City for recycling and re-use
  • Championing the Devonshires Foundation chosen charities
  • Supporting staff in participating in community events
  • Creating partnerships with our clients to enhance the life chances for the disadvantaged
  • Respecting and engaging with all those we meet in our communities.

Each other

  • Providing a place where people want to work
  • Respecting each other and our differences
  • Demonstrating honesty and integrity in our dealings
  • Delivering success for all.

We offer a diverse range of legal services to our varied client base. Click here for more details on the areas of law in which we operate.

Our legal services can be broken down into the following broad categories:

Business

We seek to provide cost effective, solution driven advice to our business clients whether we are dealing with a single contract or a complex transaction. We act for plcs, private companies (from global organisations to SMEs) and entrepreneurs as well as City based businesses and financiers.

Finance

As a City firm, we understand finance and the importance of obtaining efficient solutions. We act for well-known banks and other institutions that provide or arrange a wide variety of financial products to their respective markets. Our clients rely upon our market leading knowledge in different areas such as capital markets, charities, commercial property, corporate finance, private equity, projects and social housing.

Individuals

We carry out a range of services for many private individuals. We attempt to minimise the anxiety and uncertainty that comes with entering a legal process whether this involves litigation as a result of an accident, professional negligence, buying a property, a relationship breakdown or an employment related matter.

Public Services

We are used to advising public bodies on a variety of constitutional, commercial and operational matters. These include London Boroughs and other local authorities, statutory bodies, educational establishments and special purpose vehicles established to deliver public services.

Regulation

As a specialist regulatory law firm we provide cutting-edge advice on regulation, compliance, internal audit and disciplinary matters. We act with the Tenant Services Authority in connection with the regulation of social housing and for the Solicitors Regulation Authority, acting as their agents to close solicitors’ firms, and representing them in a wide variety of litigation – anything from the recovery of substantial sums missing from client accounts to more esoteric areas of professional indemnity insurance. Our involvement on regulatory issues also extends to Audit Commission reports, care and social care, charities, financial services, health and safety, advertising and European procurement rules and acting for private individuals and firms who are dealing with regulatory issues.

Social Housing

We understand all aspects of social housing and the regeneration of communities. We have helped draft legislation in this area and act for the Tenant Services Authority on specific issues. For Registered Providers (formerly RSLs) and ALMOs we carry out a full range of services and have nationwide coverage. For local authorities and project developers, we have been involved in many housing related transfers and projects that we are proud of.

To enable us to achieve our business objectives, create better cultural awareness and promote understanding and better communication, a diverse workforce is essential.

We are a signatory to The Law Society Diversity and Inclusion Charter because we believe diversity helps us to achieve a competitive advantage by expanding and developing the pool of talent on which we can draw. Growth depends not only on the ability to attract the best workforce but also to foster, support and retain our current employees. We work with diverse clients and a workforce that is representative of our clients promotes a better understanding of their business needs.

We are committed to providing equal opportunities in employment and to providing a work place that is free from discrimination and harassment. This means that all job applicants, employees, partners and third parties who come into contact with us, will receive equal treatment regardless of age, disability, gender re-assignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sex or sexual orientation.

We welcome applications from groups where we are currently under-represented. For this reason we ask that all candidates complete the recruitment monitoring survey in complete confidence for statistical purposes in order that we can effectively monitor how well our Diversity procedures are working.

You can download our latest diversity statistics and also view our Policies on Diversity & Inclusion and Dignity at Work.

Diversity and Inclusion is a standing agenda item at our Equity Partner Meetings, on our CSR Committee and Staff Forum. It is considered at every level to ensure that we recruit, retain and promote the best people irrespective of their background to meet our current and future business needs. We also require all our material suppliers to demonstrate their commitment to diversity and inclusion.

Devonshires Solicitors LLP is committed to undertaking its business in a socially responsible manner. By combining the talents and efforts of our people, our goal is to create an effective CSR programme which will have an impact on our community, workplace, marketplace and environment.

Our CSR programme focuses on four strands:

  • Community
  • Workplace
  • Environment
  • Charitable Giving

We aim to integrate CSR into everything we do click here to view our CSR page in more detail.

Before you start

From the moment you are offered a training contract with us you will be in regular contact with the HR Manager. We will also invite you to any firm socials that are organised in this time. This is a great way to meet our current trainees and ask them about their experience as well as other future colleagues.

Induction

Your first week at Devonshires Solicitors LLP will be spent on our Trainee Induction Programme, this will give you an introduction to us and how we work. The purpose of this week is to make the start of your training contract and your start with Devonshires Solicitors as smooth as possible.

You will meet a number of key people who will give presentations, talks, together with training sessions on our IT systems and other processes you will need to know. You will also spend some time this week meeting your team and shadowing a current trainee. We will also arrange more informal opportunities to meet with the current trainees and also members of your team.

Seat Rotations

You will undertake four six-month seats as part of your training contract with us, across our range of practice areas. Your first seat is allocated for you by the HR Manager and Training Principal, for your three remaining seats you will have some input in areas you are interested in. When making decisions about seats we take into consideration your preferences along with the firm’s needs and SRA requirements. You will need to complete a Litigation seat and Property Seat as part of your training contract.

We have a supportive and encouraging culture that focuses on training and developing our Trainees to be the best they can be.

Throughout your career with us you will be provided with a strong and well balanced support network.

Buddy – one of our current Trainee Solicitors will help you through your first few weeks. They will be there to answer those questions you dare not ask anyone else.

Trainee Supervisor – for each six month seat, you will be allocated a Trainee Supervisor who will delegate you work, monitor your progress and give you timely and constructive feedback. They will hold a formal appraisal meeting at the end of the seat with a mid review.

HR Manager – working closely with you, the Training Principal, your Trainee Supervisors and your buddy; the HRM will ensure you are well supported and encouraged throughout your time with us.

Training Principal – Nick Billingham, Partner, will act as your mentor throughout your training contract and will take a keen interest in your development. The Training Principal and HRM will liaise with your Trainee Supervisor in organising the seat rotations.

Training

By working closely with your Trainee Supervisor in each seat you will receive on the job training, this will include where possible client contact and early responsibility, which will assist you in developing the necessary skills to become a well-rounded Solicitor. As well as completing the necessary training on the Professional Skills course, which we will fund via an external provider, you will attend training sessions organised by the teams and firm during each seat.

Qualification

During the qualification process we will make you aware of our current NQ Solicitor vacancies across the teams and discuss these with you and the process of applying.

Life as a Trainee

On this page you can view our current and previous trainee profiles as well as sample a day in life from some of our trainees.

A Day in the Life of a Trainee

A trainee in our Real Estate & Projects Team

A trainee in our Commercial Litigation Team

A trainee in our Clinical Negligence and Family Teams

The application form for our 2020 Training Contract will be available from 4 April 2019 and the deadline for submissions is 31 July 2019.

To apply, please complete our online application form that can be accessed here.

Please note, we do not offer financial assistance for the GDL or the LPC.