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Slaughter and May announces a swathe of secretarial redundancies
05 October 2012
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Slaughter and May has announced that 28 full-time secretarial roles are to go in a round of redundancies. And it emerges that the firm has also seconded a number of under-occupied corporate associates to other departments.

The firm put the 165 secretaries in its London office on notice this week that the equivalent of 28 full-time secretarial roles are for the chop. It insists that the move is not about penny pinching but reflects "the changing role of secretaries within a law firm". The firm goes on to say that technological advances mean that lawyers have become "more independent". Partners will now be typing with two fingers and learning how to use "electric mail".

Slaughters is aiming to complete the redundancy process by 31 December. Happy new year!

    An independent Slaughters partner mastering modern technology, yesteryear

In other news it seems that even Slaughters' legendary corporate department has become so quiet that junior associates have been dispatched to other departments. Three went to competition for six months, two to finance and three slightly more senior corporate associates were sent to help the busy litigation department. The firm said all the associates were volunteers and junior associates who preferred to carry on playing Angry Birds remain in corporate were allowed to do so.

Re-jigging quiet associates seems to have become something of a trend. Clifford Chance recently asked capital markets associates to take three month sabbaticals, whilst Herbert Smith has been seconding under-used Hong Kong associates to other departments and to clients.

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