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Interview: Tips & Advice

2016

"There is a Watson-Glaser test and a logical reasoning test. Candidates should practice this and other similar tests. The interview requires general commercial awareness. Candidates should spend a significant amount of time learning what the different departments of a City law firm do."
Second year trainee, London
"If you are serious about applying to Hogan Lovells, look carefully at the kind of work the firm is doing as well as the general direction that the firm wants to be heading. If you have an appreciation for the firm's work and unique selling points, you'll be able to speak authentically about what attracted you here during the interview process."
First year trainee, London
"Think about why you actually want to apply and why Hogan Lovells stands out to you. Read business and legal news so you are aware of things going on in the market. Be well acquainted with the strengths and weaknesses in your CV."
First year trainee, London
"I think it's extremely important to be yourself. A lot of people have good grades and varied legal work experience, so the way you can distinguish yourself is by showing that you as a person fit in with the firm's overall personality. The firm wants inquisitive, social and effective lawyers. Don't be afraid to admit if you don't know something; the ability and desire to learn and improve are appreciated. Also, the firm has a focus on litigation, corporate and finance work – show that you are interested in one or more of these areas (you may also be interested in a niche area like IP, employment or competition), but you will have to do seats in litigation, corporate and finance departments so you should be interested in those."
First year trainee, London
"I would encourage applicants to research the firm's new 'BASE' program for new joiners."
Second year trainee, London
"Online application, online critical thinking test, assessment day. In order to prepare for the interview, I would recommend keeping up to date with commercial issues generally and the work that Hogan Lovells has been involved in recently. It is suggested that candidates know the practice areas of the firm and are able to suggest the role that each of these practice areas may play if a client comes to Hogan Lovells looking for a solution to their problem."
First year trainee, London
"When candidates apply to Hogan Lovells they should be themselves. This is a law firm that cherishes different personalities and does not try to fit candidates in pigeon holes. When doing research on the firm it is always worth going on the firm's website and looking through recent news and publications. The Lawyer is another very useful source of information. Attending open days and following news topics that interest the candidate are the best way to prepare for interviews."
First year trainee, London
"The biggest tips I have are: be able to back up anything you have said in your application well and have a decent knowledge of the issues law firms and their clients face."
First year trainee, London

2015

"Prepare to be asked how you would cope with difficult situations. The firm is looking for proactive, logical people."
Second year trainee, London/Dubai
"The process consists of an application form, an online test, a telephone interview and an assessment day. Read up on the recent news and think about how it applies to the legal sector. Try not to worry too much at the interview and just be yourself."
First year trainee, London
"My advice is to know what is going on in the world; i.e. read the papers, legal journals, etc. Make sure you understand fundamental business concepts and how businesses work - this is the 'commercial awareness' that the firm wants to see."
First year trainee, London
"Applicants should try to show that they're a person the partners would enjoy working with, not just a robot ready to churn out documents."
First year trainee, London
"Applicants need to understand the firm's goals and what it is that sets Hogan Lovells out from its competitors."
Second year trainee, London
"My tips would be to make sure you are commercially up to date with the financial press (e.g. FT) but not to over-prepare standard interview questions. Much of what I asked was slightly unusual but is trying to see how you think."
First year trainee, London
"Have a good reason for applying, other than the welcoming culture of the firm. Even if the culture is a big reason for you applying, it is good to have something else as well e.g. the work the firm has done recently."
First year trainee, London
"My best advice would be to really research the firm and have a true understanding of why you want to be a City lawyer."
First year trainee, London
"Obviously it's important to know what's going on in the business news but candidates should also be prepared to talk about how those deals and events are specifically relevant to a law firm."
First year trainee, London
"The application process consists of an online form and some online tests, a phone interview and an assessment day. Be yourself throughout, the interviewers won't try to catch you out; they want to know what sort of person you would be to work with."
First year trainee, London

2014

"Don't just apply to Hogan Lovells because it's a "big firm" with a positive culture. Hogan Lovells has a distinctive market position and takes great pride in both the work it does and the people it hires."
First year trainee, London
"Make sure you know the issues facing the legal industry, have some general commercial awareness and know your application well."
Second year trainee, Hong Kong
"Regularly read the business sections of a serious newspaper, think about why you are applying to the firm and what you like about it, think about why you want to be a City lawyer."
Second year trainee, London
"Be up-to-date on current affairs; partners are unlikely to put you on the spot but it's useful to know what is going on in the world. Interviews can vary hugely and partners will often pick up on something in your CV. It's taken as read you're intelligent enough, it's a case of establishing whether you're interested in the type of work and for the partners to establish what you are passionate about and whether they could work with you."
Second year trainee, Dubai
"Be keen, diligent, and enthusiastic, but don't try to pretend you are something you are not. There's no way you will be able to keep it up for the rest of your career, and the firm prefers people who are honest and down-to-earth!"
First year trainee, London
"Know your application form and the firm inside-out. Prepare to be asked about commercial current affairs."
Second year trainee, London
"Be as commercially aware as you can. Really understand the breadth of services that Hogan Lovells has to offer and why this is attractive to our clients."
First year trainee, London

2013

"The firm looks to hire people that will get on with the rest of the team, who can communicate well and who have the necessary commercial skills, as well as the requisite level of intelligence. I would recommend candidates do their research and consider how they would answer basic questions like "Why did you choose law?" And "Why this firm?" But then that they just relax and realise that interviewers aren't there to trick them but to assess their 'fit' with the firm. Be yourself - if the firm only wants the 'fake' you that you have created for the interview, will the 'real' you actually be happy there?"
Second year trainee, Paris
"You should have an open mind about the type of work you want to do as a lawyer as life as a trainee will be varied...And you won't know what you like until you try it. Read up on current affairs."
Second year trainee, London
"The firm values diversity. The best preparation is to show a keen interest in business and not be phased by challenging questions where the interviewer is looking more for how you react than for the 'right' answer - but ensure your responses are reasoned and clear."
First year trainee, London
"Strong academics, positive and driven. Best preparation for the interview is to be clear about your motivation for applying. In my experience, showing enthusiasm is one of the most important aspects of the interview and training process."
Second year trainee, London
"Smart, dedicated trainees who value teamwork and are generally sociable. Knowledge of and interest in the firm's recent deals is always a plus."
First year trainee, London
"It's a good idea to get a vacation scheme, although not essential. The interview for the actual training contract (after the vacation scheme) was a bit of a joke, we just talked about my holiday and why I liked the firm. I felt like they had already made up their mind, and the interview was just a formality. The best advice would be to not be too quiet or reserved in the group discussion session. If you try to set an agenda, you become the natural leader of the group."
First year trainee, London
Our 'Inside Buzz' reviews are the comments and views of recent graduate recruits, giving you a view of what it may be like to work for an organisation. Copyright of all TARGETjobs Inside Buzz material lies solely with GTI Media.
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