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Staff at a firm yet to offer a Covid bonus try to have a word with management.


Taylor Wessing is the latest firm to thank its staff for their hard work during the pandemic by offering them an extra bonus.

The firm is rewarding staff with an additional "thank you" bonus of 5% of their annual wage.

“Our people’s support for the business and for one another has been truly exceptional over the past year," said Taylor Wessing managing partner Shane Gleghorn, "these decisions with respect to recognition are driven by a desire to recognise the contribution, commitment and hard work of the extraordinary people in our firm.”

The firm is also giving staff a 'Taylor Wessing holiday' on Friday 28 May, which follows Osborne Clarke's recent announcement to give staff an extra day's holiday in August.

Other firms to have dished out 'Covid bonuses' of 5% of salary include A&O, Clifford Chance, Herbert Smith Freehills, LinklatersHogan Lovells and Osborne Clarke, while Shoosmiths gifted an additional 7.7% of salary to staff. Other firms have offered set bonuses: Addleshaw Goddard (£1,500), Ashurst (£1,000) and Bird & Bird (£1,000). DLA Piper let its staff choose between an extra week of pay or holiday. 

Meanwhile, some US firms, such as Morrison & Foerster and Akin Gump, have sprayed the cash with Covid bonuses of thousands of pounds.

On the remote working front, Gowling WLG is the latest firm to announce that its staff can work from home for 50% of their time, after lockdown restrictions are eased. The firm has launched Agile+ which may sound like a vitamin supplement for joint health, but is actually the firm's flexible working scheme. 

"Mixing time in the office and at home delivers the best of both worlds, and having experimented with a myriad of working arrangements over the last year we are keen to also embed that into Agile+ with a broader menu of alternative working patterns," said David Fennell, Chief Executive at Gowling WLG. 

The firm is also trialling working patterns in a pilot scheme "to include flexible start and finish times, compressed working weeks and enabling people to shift working hours to early morning or late evening."

While other City firms have also offered staff a 50/50 split between the office and home, DAC Beachcroft and Irwin Mitchell have opted for the most flexible approach by giving staff the power to decide where, when and how they work. 

The forced absence from the office has permanently broken many people's tether to the office. And firms that don't adapt their policies to allow flexibility, may find some of their employees staying away from the office for good: a RollOnFriday survey revealed that over 50% of lawyers would swap firms if they couldn't work from home. 

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Comments

Anonymous 21 May 21 11:52

50% homeworking? Bottoms to that - we now know that work is something you do, not a place you go to. If someone wants to work in the office, great. If they want to work at home, great. If they want a mix, also great. If my employer forces me to do any of those against my wishes, I will transfer my very transferable skills elsewhere.

Anonymous 21 May 21 13:57

Oh great. Another story on bonuses. 
 

I’m not going to get a bonus, and the topic is now so old that it isn’t going to shame the management into giving them out.
 

Good luck to those that get a bonus, and I hope they spend it well to help the UK Economy.
 

For those that still find it unfair that they aren’t getting a bonus, I like to think that as soon as there is decent employment market mobility, people will look to move to Firms that value their workforce differently.

But that probably won’t happen.

Anon 21 May 21 15:08

No, no news of bonuses at GWLG - tho the firm has repaid the money withheld when we went to a 4 day week for 6 months (during which many of us were still working 5 days a week to be paid for 4...).

the up to 50% thing is balls as well - the most i'm looking to do in the office is 40%. I doubt the firm will be that arsey about it tbh and it will come down to which teams choose to take which approach. if they are painful about it I suspect they may get a few notices being handed in. 

Gerry Atric 26 May 21 12:17

Reed Smith has also expressed its appreciation of its lawyers by also giving out a Covid bonus ....... only to those who hit their hourly target for the year! 

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