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Hours

7.6 / 10

(based on 9 ratings in 2019)

2019

"The hours are very good, particularly when compared to other trainees across the city. The firm is respectful of work/life balance, which is not to say that long hours are not sometimes required, but rather that they are avoided when possible and appreciated when necessary."
Second year trainee, London
"It's not very flexible for trainees (there's no working from home) but there is the possibility of working from home on laptops in the evenings, which helps a lot."
Second year trainee, London
"Hours can be unpredictable, as with any law firm. Trainees are sometimes required to work very late (well into the early hours)."
Second year trainee, London
"The working hours at the firm can vary from trainee to trainee and largely depend on what matters you are working on. The hours are at the lower end of the City law firm scale. If you have a particular event planned then the firm is great at allowing you to leave the office as long as you give people sufficient notice."
First year trainee, London
"Bristows has far better hours than other comparable law firms. The hours are not very flexible as a trainee, though this improves upon qualification."
Second year trainee, London
"Supervisors are generally relaxed about you leaving on time if there is nothing urgent that needs doing. The firm has a good reputation with regards to work/life balance. However, hours vary significantly across departments and even within departments depending on what matters you're working on."
First year trainee, London

2018

"There aren't options to work from home for trainees, but that is to be expected as we need supervision and training. The hours are excellent for a top City law firm."
First year trainee, London
"The hours aren't particularly flexible for trainees. However, the firm does seem to provide more flexibility for associates to work from home."
Second year trainee, London
"My general day is from 9.00 am to 6.30 pm. This is obviously dependent on what is happening in my matters at the time, but staying later than 8.00 pm is very unusual. If you are in the office late then there will be a reason for doing so, such as a trial you are involved in being about to start. If you have no urgent work to complete then you could be leaving much earlier than 6.30 pm."
Second year trainee, London
"The hours vary depending on department but they're generally great. On average I'd say I've worked from 9.00 am to 7.00pm throughout the training contract. You aren't expected to stay late just to show your face in the office and partners understand that you have a life outside of work."
Second year trainee, London
"Bristows doesn't expect you to work unnecessarily long hours. You are expected to get your work done (and properly) but you aren't going to be judged for going home at 6.30 pm if you've finished your work for the day."
First year trainee, London
"An average day is 9.15 am to 6.15 pm. The work/life balance is excellent and, providing you get the work done, there is no expectation for you to stay late."
First year trainee, London

2017

"It varies from department to department. In a litigation seat, I would generally work from 9.00 am until 7.00 pm. Other seats have better hours."
First year trainee, London
"Compared to friends at other firms, we have it very good!"
First year trainee, London
"Average hours are probably around 9.00 am – 7.00 pm. There is no face-time culture so you are encouraged to leave when you have finished your work for the day. The firm is looking at introducing more flexibility to working arrangements as well."
Second year trainee, London
"My hours have been 9.00 am – 7.00 pm on average. They were slightly longer in the several weeks before a case I was working on went to trial but that was to be expected and everybody worked late together. Because it was a litigation seat, there were also times where it was much quieter and I was able to leave around 6.00 pm. I have never had to cancel any evening plans and have never had to work over the weekend."
First year trainee, London
"Normal hours for a trainee are 9.00 am – 6.30 pm. Obviously, this increases around the time of trials but usually only as late as 9.00 pm (I have never worked past 11.00 pm) I have come in on a couple of weekends purely voluntarily. The partners are always very apologetic when trainees have to stay late and, when I've still been in the office past 7.00 pm, my supervising partner has often asked me why I'm still here and told me to go home. The firm is not very flexible about working from home (the policy has only just been introduced on a three-month trial basis, only permits working from home one day per fortnight and does not apply to trainees)."
Second year trainee, London

2016

"Normally 8.30 am – 7.30 pm, but can often leave much before that."
First year trainee, London
"It's been really busy for the last year or so, but still not in the same league as silver/magic circle. Pretty flexible; you can always go out to a doctor's appointment etc without worrying."
Second year trainee, London
"My hours are roughly 9.00 am – 7.00 pm. This is considered good in the legal profession."
First year trainee, London
"Generally the hours are good. There is no culture of staying late just because you need to be seen to be doing so. If you have work that needs to be done, you do it; if not it's absolutely fine to go home at a reasonable hour."
Second year trainee, London
"I start at 9.00 am and usually finish at 7.00 pm. I've only worked past 8.00 pm about half a dozen times in my first year. I've come in at the weekends for a couple of hours only twice (voluntarily). Firm can be flexible with hours, particularly for those with children. For example, I know that some senior female lawyers work a couple of days a week or work from home."
London
"Can vary from department to department, but mostly my experience has been positive."
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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