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Hours

8.9 / 10

(based on 11 ratings in 2016)

2016

"The hours you work vary from team to team, and on how busy each team is. In my current seat I usually work from 8.45 am to about 6.45 pm. There is no culture of staying until the last person leaves the office. As long as you have done your work, you tend to leave at a sensible time. Obviously when a team is busy, everyone tends to stay late together and get involved."
First year trainee, Cambridge
"Very flexible in my experience."
First year trainee, Cambridge
"My work hours are generally quite regular from 9.00 am to 5.00 pm/6.00 pm. It really depends on how busy you are – some teams are busier than others and some have more urgent deadlines to meet so have to stay later. You are expected to work late in order to complete your work if necessary, but the firm is also flexible with lunchtimes etc."
Second year trainee, Norwich
"I usually arrive at around 9.00 am and leave at 5.30 pm. This varies depending on the department I'm in."
Second year trainee, Birmingham
"Quite flexible, but when it's busy you'll be expected to put a shift in."
Second year trainee, Cambridge
"The firm has flexi-time arrangements and most supervisors are flexible if you need to leave early or get in late for a particular reason. Hours in some teams can be long when it's busy but there is no expectation for trainees to put in face-time or stay late when there's nothing to do."
Second year trainee, Birmingham
"Generally 9.00 am – 6.00 pm. Though in my last seat I did 9.00 am – 5.30 pm as I was commuting for two hours each way and the team were very good about letting me leave on time for trains."
Second year trainee, Cambridge
"Generally my hours are pretty good and sociable, with only a few late nights. We can take our lunch break when we like, which is handy."
Second year trainee, Cambridge

2015

"The hours you work totally depends on the team you are in and on how busy that team is. Usually teams are okay with you leaving at a sensible time, provided you've done your work."
Second year trainee, Cambridge
"Working hours vary between teams, but I usually expect to work from 8:30am-6:30pm. Where you have medical appointments or other commitments the firm is very understanding. As long as you get your work done and don't take it for granted, you'll be fine."
First year trainee, Cambridge
"My hours are very good - I tend to average ten hour days, although of course when there is a deal to be done this can be much longer. Most people are very accommodating when it comes to evening plans."
First year trainee, Cambridge
"Hours are genuinely very good. As long as you do your work, there's no culture of staying until the last person leaves as a trainee (unlike some firms I know of). When the team is very busy, everyone will stay late together and all 'muck in' rather than leaving people to deal with it in isolation."
Second year trainee, Birmingham
"Hours can vary from seat to seat. Corporate seats will be busier at times when a transaction is close to completing. My busiest seat has been my construction seat during which there were two large disputes running at the same time and hours were longer. If you have commitments outside of work like a young family, the firm is very good at finding a balance to allow you to leave at reasonable times and to manage your working capacity."
Second year trainee, Norwich
"My working day generally lasts from 9:00am to 5:00pm. There has been the occasional time when I have stayed late to complete work by a deadline but this has only been for an additional hour or so. My firm are quite lenient regarding flexibility and generally permit staff to take their lunch hour whenever they prefer."
First year trainee, Norwich

2014

"The firm has a flexi-time policy (core hours 10:00am-4:00pm), although in reality not many people take advantage of it as much as they might. Having said that, everyone is aware of it and use it as and when needed. Work hours tend to vary depending on department and level of business. I have regularly gone for months doing standard hours (9:00am-5:30pm), but also have gone for periods of time working much longer hours. I have occasionally worked late into the evening and weekends, though this happens so rarely that I haven't minded. There is certainly not a culture of doing this - it is very much a case of 'needs must'."
Second year trainee, Birmingham
"9:00am to about 5:30pm is expected as a minimum, I typically turn up at about 8:30am and leave at about 6:00pm. Working late is sometimes required, although in my six months at the firm I have stayed later than 8:00pm only on two or three occasions (although this can vary by seat, and one of those was to 3:00am). Generally working late is noticed, however, and the senior fee earners are grateful."
First year trainee, Cambridge
"The work/life balance is brilliant. If you aren't busy, then you aren't expected just to sit around doing nothing like in some firms; there is none of the 'face-time' culture at M&R. The firm operates a flexi-time system where you must be in the office from 10:00am-4:00pm but can mix and match your hours accordingly if necessary. This is brilliant when you have a dentist/doctors appointment, etc. and need to come in an hour later or so. Obviously trainees are expected to work long hours when it is required, but this is made much easier by the fact that the whole team will stay late if needed. Everyone will put in the extra hours where necessary and will be much appreciated as a result."
First year trainee, Birmingham
"You are not expected to stay late in the office for the sake of it. When there is work to be done I stay as long as I need to get the job done. The firm has a brilliant work to life balance."
First year trainee, Manchester
"Overall, the hours are good. However, I am involved in several trainee organisations so this does take up a lot of my time."
Second year trainee, Manchester
"I usually get in around 8:45am and stay til around 6/6:30pm, although I do sometimes leave before that. Official hours are 9:00am to 5:00pm. Actual hours depend on the team you are in and how busy you are, so vary from seat to seat. The latest I have stayed is 10:00pm."
First year trainee, Cambridge
"There is some flexibility around contractual hours for appointments outside the office. You are expected to stay late if there is work to do, but generally have a good work/life balance."
Second year trainee, Cambridge
"I am very happy with my work hours. There are always times when you have to stay late until the work is done, but it is not a culture in the office or between the other trainees that everyone stays late."
First year trainee, Norwich

2013

"This varies depending on seat and workload, but there is no expectation to stick around after 5:00pm if you've got no work to do."
Second year trainee, Cambridge
"This depends from seat to seat. Generally, they are very good."
First year trainee, Cambridge
"I rarely have to work very late and when I do I feel I am really contributing so enjoy staying to get the job done. I have a very good work/life balance."
Second year trainee, Birmingham
"Work hours all depend on how much work I have to get done that day. There are times I have started work at 8:45am and left at 5:15pm and other times I may start at 8:00am and finish at 6:30pm. I have only had to stay late once - until 10:30pm scanning documents - and this was because it was an emergency situation! I feel that as long as you get all your work done that you need to, there is no pressure to stay late in the office."
First year trainee, Norwich
"Good working hours and the firm has been very helpful and accommodating where I have had to reduce my working hours due to ill-health."
Second year trainee, Cambridge
"The firm is flexible about working hours. Those who get-in early usually leave early - there is no concern about having to stick around in the office 'just to be seen' by the partners."
Second year trainee, Birmingham
"The hours are generally good. However, there are some days that are unpredictable in litigation."
First year trainee, Cambridge
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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