How confident are you that you will be kept on at the end of your training contract?

Firm Score (/10)
Michelmores LLP 9.19
Sullivan & Cromwell LLP 9.15
Burges Salmon LLP 9.06
Riverview Law 9.03
Weil, Gotshal & Manges 8.98
TLT 8.82
Bristows LLP 8.82
Slaughter and May 8.81
Latham & Watkins 8.78
Kirkland & Ellis International LLP 8.75
Linklaters 8.62
White & Case LLP 8.56
Lester Aldridge LLP 8.54
Herbert Smith Freehills 8.53
Forbes Solicitors 8.44
Debevoise & Plimpton LLP 8.43
Covington & Burling LLP 8.43
Farrer & Co 8.40
Coffin Mew LLP 8.38
Foot Anstey 8.36

You’ve only just cleared the hurdle of gaining a training contract and survived your first few weeks as a trainee, when thoughts soon turn to the likelihood of a job offer on qualification. It is notoriously difficult to predict the newly qualified (NQ) retention rates of firms when selecting a training contract because they are so dependent on a firm’s future business needs and the economic climate.

However, current trainees at Michelmores ‘feel passionate about the opportunities for the future’, while those at Sullivan & Cromwell highlight the investment the firm makes in each trainee. Burges Salmon trainees cite the firm’s ‘encouraging retention rate’ as a reason for choosing it, and at law and compliance firm Riverview Law trainees are eligible for its Leadership Programme which trains future managers of the firm.

The retention rates and ‘excellent long-term career prospects’ are factors for choosing Weil, Gotshal & Manges and at TLT trainees feel they have ‘better prospects of being kept on’ compared to peers at other firms. Bristows ‘all but guarantees a job offer on qualification’, says one trainee, while the ‘future career opportunities’ is another good reason for choosing Slaughter and May.

Latham & Watkin’s trainees report that they feel invested in, particularly in respect of overseas opportunities including retreats, client interaction and secondments. At fellow US firm Kirkland & Ellis International, trainees are ‘treated like an NQ’ and given the ‘opportunity to carve out your career’, while the firm has a ‘serious commitment to junior lawyers’.