Our trainees write honest blogs about their training
Jane Keir, senior partner at Kingsley Napley, says their firm has made a shift towards informal feedback throughout the year rather than sticking to the traditional annual appraisal model.
How do you manage younger professionals?
We have an open culture of giving regular feedback. We also take 360 degree feedback for all members of the firm, which help us to identify how an individual is performing in their role from the perspective of all those they work with. We use this information to recognise the developmental needs of the firm and what our main training needs for the year ahead are. Young professionals want to know exactly where they stand and the way we manage this is through encouraging regular supervision meetings. We have made a shift towards frequent, informal feedback throughout the year rather than sticking to the more traditional annual appraisal model.
How important is your company’s Corporate Social Responsibility in attracting and retaining young professionals?
Hugely important. Each year at our AGM, to which the whole firm is invited, one of the most popular agenda items is the firm’s CSR activities over the last year. From assisting on death row cases in the US or digging flower beds, to bake off challenges and firm wide lunchtime talks from organisations such as Stonewall and Urban Lawyers, there is something for everyone. Young professionals need little encouragement to get involved with all the CSR activities on offer, and they add real momentum to the firm’s efforts. Our CSR efforts are increasingly asked about during interviews and we take great pride in telling candidates about the charities we support, and our variety of pro bono initiatives.
What other strategies do you implement to attract young talent?
We have a wide ranging strategy which includes a presence in student directories like Chambers Student Guide, Lex100 & LawCareers.Net, and we continue to win awards for the quality of the work, client contact and meeting our trainees’ expectations. We encourage our trainees to give honest feedback on what it is like to train at Kingsley Napley and asking them to write blogs about their training. We often find that our most popular blogs are the ‘a day in the life of….’ ones, which give the readers a real flavour of what day to day life is like at the firm. Over the last couple of years we have started attending student fairs to raise awareness of the firm and what we are able to offer, and use social media like LinkedIn and Twitter to advertise our roles. Lastly, we are able to offer a number of work experience placements in different teams across the firm, which gives attendees an insight into what it is like to work at a firm like KN before they apply.