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Published 3 September 2020
International law firm DAC Beachcroft is pleased to announce the launch of its new trainee development programme and plans to increase the number of trainees and apprentices across the firm, offering the next generation of talent a variety of routes into the legal profession.
The firm’s overhauled trainee development scheme, which will be piloted from September 2020, has been developed in line with the O-Shaped Lawyer principles. It will also incorporate a data analytics diploma to aid commercial decision making, making DAC Beachcroft the first law firm to offer such a certification.
“We are excited to be welcoming 18 new trainees in September who will be the first cohort to go through our innovative new training programme,” said Kirsty Medway, DAC Beachcroft’s Head of Learning & Development. “The O-Shaped Lawyer principles are a natural fit for our business, and this programme formalises the approach in our training. To succeed and give their clients the best possible advice, the lawyers of the future need a broad skill set that goes beyond technical excellence. Equipping our own lawyers with the right skills from the start of their careers is crucial.”
Through the new training programme, DACB trainees will develop legal project management skills by participating in a ‘trainee shadow board’, work on real business development projects, attend tailored client relationship management modules, and learn more about how the firm’s business operates through a series of placements into Business Services teams. The accompanying 13-month accredited data literacy diploma will prepare trainees to make better decisions using data, incorporating six modules: enabling great data conversations; storage, security and compliance; data integration and preparation; data storytelling; data-driven insights; and the growing digital world.
“Revamping our trainee development programme is a significant step we are taking to renew our commitment to those at the beginning of their legal careers,” said Anthea Lane, Training Principal at DAC Beachcroft and herself a former trainee at the firm. “However, we are going even further: we will be increasing the number of training contracts available in 2021 and 2022 to 20 each year, boosting our overall England & Wales trainee population by 43% by 2022.
“Despite the challenges posed by the pandemic over the last few months, we have had great success with our remote assessment centres and vacation scheme, and I am also pleased to confirm that we have not reduced salaries for our trainees or newly qualified lawyers. We are continuing to invest in them and taking steps to ensure they get the strongest start to their careers in the law.”
DAC Beachcroft, which had a 100% trainee retention rate for 2020, is also investing in apprentices. The firm has seven current paralegal apprentices who will be moving on to solicitor apprenticeships from January 2021, tripling the number of solicitor apprentices at DACB. The firm also plans to recruit four new paralegal apprentices to start in the new year.
David Pollitt, DAC Beachcroft’s Managing Partner, added, “I strongly feel it is both our responsibility and our privilege to help nurture the next generation of talent and develop the lawyers of tomorrow. We are committed to giving our trainees and apprentices the best possible experience to build up their skills and knowledge. The redesign of our training contract programme and the increases we are making in training contracts and solicitor apprenticeships are exciting developments, which will no doubt support our aim of being a place where talented people – at all stages of their careers – want to work.”