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Firm of the Year 2017: Lawyers reveal what's great about their firms
02 December 2016
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Since it opened last week, hundreds of staff have graded their firm (if you haven't, please do, it takes 20 seconds). This week RollOnFriday is highlighting a few of the positive things you've had to say.

A trainee at Freshfields salutes the "absolutely phenomenal group of trainees", who indulge in "very minimal backstabbing". At fellow Magic Circle firms, a Linklaters trainee vouches for the "great work, nice people, fantastic facilities and support", while a Clifford Chance trainee declares simply, "I could never have imagined my training contract being this enjoyable". Elsewhere, a trainee at Addleshaw Goddard reveals they are mollycoddled by the support staff, divulging: "As a trainee I wouldn't even know how to refill the printer with paper". 

At Macfarlanes, a 4PQE vouches for "hungry and driven partners willing to roll up their sleeves instead of resting on their laurels". Staff elsewhere had nice things to say about their bosses, too. A 4PQE in Bristol says they've worked at Burges Salmon, last year's joint winner, for six years and, "I just cannot see myself leaving", partly thanks to senior partner Alan Barr who "should be a windowsill because he is a total ledge". A happy 3PQE at Baker & McKenzie says its partners are "(mostly) very human", so much so that after working a few hours at the weekend on short notice, the matter partner "came round with an apology and a bottle of wine". Aw.

  "Oh, hello. Has YOUR firm been a nice firm?"

There are also some "pretty great" partners at Herbert Smith Freehills, says a 1PQE, "who are really well-known and respected in the industry, and who don't treat you like a turd". Which is nice. A Trowers & Hamlins 5PQE says that  "all of the female partners have children yet seem to find a balance between work and home - that's very inspiring to see".

In fact, dozens of positive responses have been received from Trowers staff*. The firm is steering well clear of the Golden Turd it won in 2015, with non-fee-earners praising the "open and collegiate" culture and a 2PQE clarifying that "the pay is good and is reviewed often, despite the rot that gets peddled as 'news' on here".

Irwin Mitchell staff are also combating the dastardly Mainstream Media, with on employee writing, "We are incessantly and mercilessly slated by the comments sections of the online legal press and, while the firm is obviously not perfect, many of these things are utter fabrications". Apparently, "the rumours that circulate were started by disgruntled Thomas Eggar types trying to stymie the balls-up of a merger. There was talk about factory-second custard creams and mobile phones being banned in the office, and this just gets repeated. It's bullshit". A paralegal at the PI giant muses that, "Maybe the demise of Slater and Gordon has made everything here at IM seem better than it truly is". Perhaps. The only positive comment about Slaters so far is from a 4PQE who can only manage, "the security guards have good banter".

Check out The Nice List, which features a positive comment on most of the firms for which entries have been received.  Add your two cents in the survey.

*If your HR team is cajoling you to fill in the survey, that's a good thing. They should be. RollOnFriday probably asked them to do it. Just be true to yourself when you fill it in.

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