Diversity and inclusion are key strategic priorities at Burges Salmon. Our people are key to our success and we value the contribution that each individual makes. Our culture is open and collaborative and we promote an inclusive working environment where everyone feels they can be themselves at work. This is reflected in our values of fairness and respect.
Recruitment: We use Rare Contextual Recruitment System, which flags socio-economic factors and puts academic achievements into context depending on where applicants went to school. It helps to create a level playing field and means that we are not missing out on potential talent who might otherwise slip through the net.
We play an active role in improving social inclusion and access to the legal profession, raising aspirations of young people in the local community. We are signatories of PRIME, an alliance of law firms across the UK committed to improving access to the legal profession through work experience. In addition, we are signatories of the Social Mobility Pledge and founder members of the Social Mobility Business Partnership. As part of our commitment to offer fair access to quality work experience, we run 'Bright Sparks', our award winning work experience scheme open to school students from a wide range of schools.
We also work with Bristol City Council on their 'Stepping Up' programme, a diversity leadership programme for future leaders in Bristol, developing a talent pipeline that more meaningfully reflects our population and community. We assist with the recruitment and provide mentors for the programme.
Our legal apprenticeship programme was launched in 2016 as part of the Government Trailblazers initiative. Following its success, in 2019 we are launching our business professional apprenticeship programme, opening up further apprenticeship opportunities across the business.
We advertise our vacancies via a wide range of publications and websites, including a recent advert in the Black Solicitors Network jobs board. In 2019 we will continue to feature in the Aspiring Solicitors Legal Diversity and Inclusion Directory, both online and in print.
Support and Engagement: As well as attracting and recruiting diverse talent, it is crucial that we retain our people, providing an inclusive and supportive environment where everyone feels they can be themselves and thrive at work.
We have established a number of internal diversity networks including our BAME network, BCultured, our LGBT+ network, BProud and our Disability Forum. These networks work alongside the firm’s central diversity and inclusion group to inform, advise and raise awareness of diversity matters in the firm.