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Culture

8.6 / 10

(based on 18 ratings in 2019)

2019

"The firm is exactly as it professes to be. I was impressed with the firm's friendly and warm manner, even during the interview stages, while maintaining the right balance of professionalism. There is a hierarchy but, as a first year trainee, I feel completely comfortable approaching a partner in the team. For example, upon moving into a new seat, the partner in charge of the department made a conscious effort to know my name and make me feel completely at ease on my first day. This made me feel valued and welcome. This is just the sort of attitude that Irwin Mitchell promotes and I feel very lucky to work in a national firm as well-known as Irwin Mitchell while still feeling valued."
First year trainee, Sheffield
"The partners are all lovely people. They're all approachable and genuinely want to help you. There is always an opportunity to get involved in social events after work."
First year trainee, Sheffield
"Everyone is really friendly. The social life outside of work could be better but it is slowly improving. There's no real feeling of hierarchy and I don't have any issues talking with partners if I need to."
First year trainee, Bristol
"There's a culture of hard work but also an appreciation that it is important to have a life outside work."
Second year trainee, Sheffield
"There are plenty of social activities (yoga, pilates, netball, football, meditation, knitting club and book club etc) and the juniors spend a lot of time together going for lunches and drinks after work. The partners are extremely approachable so you can ask them anything and everything and they will give you their time happily."
First year trainee, Southampton
"It's a friendly environment and finally settling down post merger."
Second year trainee, London
"I'm given regular and constant trust to manage my own workload and liaise with clients under appropriate levels of supervision. Personal and professional successes are celebrated and a good work/life balance is encouraged. The firm discourages a hierarchical structure and access to senior staff is readily given."
First year trainee, Birmingham

2018

"It is an open-plan office so, unless your colleagues are on the phone, they are happy for you to approach them. The team works hard to ensure that you are involved in what is being worked on. There is plenty of opportunity to socialise within the firm and events are held both within teams and within the firm to reflect that. The culture is friendly and you are surrounded by hard-working and supportive individuals."
First year trainee, Newcastle
"It's approachable, comfortable and not particularly hierarchical. It's easy to have conversations with unfamiliar faces without even realising they are partners and/or department heads. We have regular social activities and lots of emphasis is placed on interdepartmental networking to encourage cross referrals so that we can operate as a full-service law firm."
First year trainee, Manchester
"There are some very friendly people in the firm/office who do their best to encourage social interaction between colleagues. This can range from events and drinks to countryside walks. Unfortunately, despite the firm's best efforts, there is a divide between PLS (personal legal services) and BLS (business legal services)."
First year trainee, Birmingham
"We have a strong team ethic across departments. There is clear hierarchy but those in managerial positions are generally very approachable. The socialising could be better, particularly between different departments."
Second year trainee, Sheffield
"There is a very friendly atmosphere within the office. There is a conscious effort to ensure that all staff are happy and comfortable and a further effort to make sure that there are plenty of social activities going on outside of working hours. There is a netball team, a book club, a choir, bake sales and various charity and fundraising events. There is plenty to get involved in."
First year trainee, Southampton
"My office has a very sociable culture. We get along well and are able to do sociable things such as netball, a book club and charity events. The working hours are good and there is no expectation for you to stay late if there is no work to do."
First year trainee, Southampton
"We have a great culture both in and outside of work as well as lots of opportunities to socialise. For example, all expenses were paid during the first two weeks, which allowed us to sample the culture of the firm as well as sample the local food scene. There are netball and running clubs after work and a great charity society that organises cake sales as well as pumpkin carving competitions. Teams work on a cross-departmental basis, which allows you to get to know everyone in the office (and in the other offices) really quickly."
First year trainee, Southampton
"Everyone is working to achieve the best outcomes for clients. The team structures are important as they let you know who is the best person to assist on certain tasks or queries, but it does not feel as though there is a hierarchy in departments and everyone is willing to learn from each other."
First year trainee, Newcastle

2017

"The culture is OK but there should be more social events to bring the teams together."
Second year trainee, Birmingham
"The firm has a large number of employees, which means that there is a strong team environment in every department. You will also have colleagues on various levels so it is easy to find someone who has been in a similar position to you at one point. Everyone is friendly and willing to help. There is a real emphasis on work/life balance, with lots of events and opportunities to network outside of the office."
Second year trainee, Sheffield
"There is an abundance of cooperation and teamwork, especially under stressful situations. Nobody feels like they are dealing with anything alone."
First year trainee, Manchester
"It's good for a law firm and quite cooperative."
First year trainee, London
"The firm values its staff and there are many events that people are encouraged to join in with. The trainees attend a lot of events together, which helps to build strong friendships."
First year trainee, Leeds
"Teams work together to reach goals and there is always someone to answer your questions. Trainees also have nights out together and the firm organises social events."
Second year trainee, Manchester
"Speaking for the Southampton office, the culture is fantastic. Everyone is comfortable speaking to and socialising with partners, associate solicitors, paralegals and support staff. Everyone is very supportive of each other and takes an active interest in each other's work life and aspirations as well as personal life. Regular socials are organised such as cinema trips and nights out (the last one was bowling at Hollywood Bowl). Teamwork is very much encouraged and the office takes an active approach in supervising people's work capacity if they think you have too much on."
First year trainee, Southampton
"There are plenty of social events and all of the teams that I have experienced are friendly and supportive. Departments often work together and there is a good sense of teamwork."
Second year trainee, Sheffield
"We have a great culture at Irwin Mitchell and everyone is approachable whether they're a trainee or a managing partner. We have lots of social events and we enjoy socialising after hours."
Second year trainee, Chichester
"The culture depends upon teams. In some teams the hierarchy is apparent, but, in others, trainees are treated as integral members of the team. Socialising outside of work isn't the highest priority of the firm, but there are planned socials."
Second year trainee, Sheffield

2016

"Within the office everyone is generally very friendly and helpful. There is less socialising than I would have expected."
First year trainee, Bristol
"There is no face-time precedent. If you have work to do you stay late and if you don't you can go home. The open-plan office means that it is a social environment and there are no 'closed doors'. People are approachable and always willing to help. Senior and junior members of the team all sit near each other so it feels less hierarchical. The socialising is great. There are a lot of sporting and charitable activities and a hugely successful and inclusive Friday night pub club."
First year trainee, London
"There is a relatively flat structure and you can easily have a chat with a partner in the kitchen. There is a hierarchy (as in all firms) but after hours you wouldn't really know it. It's a social firm and people tend to go for drinks relatively often."
First year trainee, London
"All of the departments are friendly and all have held social events during my seats. There have been team lunches during office hours and things such as theatre trips after hours. Each team works differently and that makes it interesting. There is a lot of work to do and people are keen to help each other out when needed."
First year trainee, Sheffield
"Generally the culture is very good. There is a definite hierarchical culture but what this means depends very much on what team you are in, as a lot of the teams have come in bulk from other firms. For example, in some teams, business development is a task for all but in others it is very much for the partners only. The social side of things also really depends on what team you are in."
First year trainee, Birmingham
"The hours in the Chichester office are very good. There is a great sense of teamwork and we participate in events such as a recent charity dragon boat race and cricket match."
First year trainee, Chichester
"The team I work in is a small one and is very collaborative. We work well together and are all friends with one another. This helps to eliminate the negative impact a hierarchical structure can have on a department's morale. I have been given the opportunity to socialise on a fairly regular basis, attending trainee meetings and visiting other offices for work and training. These have allowed me to meet other members of the firm and the other trainees who are always keen to go out for lunch or a drink after work. It's great to get to know your colleagues who are at the 'same level' as you because these relationships are very important for the future."
First year trainee, Newbury
"People are generally very supportive and approachable, including partners. In most departments the hours are good so there is time to socialise with colleagues after work. The firm strongly encourages networking and pro bono so you get to meet a lot of people, if you're willing to put yourself out there."
First year trainee, Birmingham

2015

"There is an inclusive culture and friendly environment at Irwin Mitchell. Teams at the firm work closely on matters, and I feel that my input is valued. The firm is also sociable, as staff across all levels come together outside of work."
First year trainee, Birmingham
"There is a very welcoming environment at the firm, and there is an open-door policy. Everyone is approachable - even the most senior partners in the team. There are always socials and drinks within the team, and everyone gets along really well, which builds a sense of cohesion."
Second year trainee, London
"The firm's culture in the office is very work-focused, but it manages to remain light-hearted at the same time. Outside of work is very relaxed and everyone has fun. We have after work drinks, team lunches and lunches with all of the trainees."
First year trainee, Birmingham
"Irwin Mitchell organises a variety of activities outside of work. These are for both social occasions and for charities, so we can get to know others within the firm, or those at the firm's other offices which is really nice. The firm has always portrayed itself to me as friendly, approachable and inviting."
First year trainee, Birmingham
"There is a good atmosphere within the firm. In a large majority of cases, staff at Irwin Mitchell are very approachable and friendly, including those who are more senior. There are lots of extra-curricular activities to become involved in, and these are generally encouraged. On the first Friday of every month we have drinks, sponsored by the partners, and although it is generally the same crowd of people who attend, the evenings are generally good fun. Working hours are very reasonable for a law firm, although solicitors often bring work home with them."
First year trainee, Manchester
"I have been very impressed with teamwork at the firm the vast majority of the time, as everyone works together to achieve the best for clients. Everyone is friendly and approachable, and in most cases the hierarchy is clear, but everyone's opinions are valued."
First year trainee, Leeds
"There are really good hours and work/life balance here at Irwin Mitchell. Everyone is very friendly, the partners are approachable, the teams work together well and there are lots of socials and dress down days."
First year trainee, Bristol
"There is a very good work/life balance and there is no need to "show face" to keep up appearances. There are groups of people, mainly the juniors, who socialise after work."
First year trainee, Leeds

2014

"There is great teamwork, lots of interaction between the offices. Lots of social activities to get involved in and interaction between the personal and business parts of the firm is increasing."
Second year trainee, Manchester
"The atmosphere in the office is both friendly and vibrant. Every employee is approachable and encouraging, right the way through from paralegal to partner. Each individual is motivated to work hard for the benefit of the team and cross-selling is actively encouraged as a way to further the success of the firm. Socialising amongst colleagues is a regular occurrence at firm organised events and otherwise."
First year trainee, Birmingham
"The firm has a very good structure. We are encouraged to work hard and to the best of our ability, but there is always something interesting to get involved with out of hours. The firm actively encourages us to take part in business development and social responsibility activities. Our supervisors are all approachable and there is a definite 'open-door' policy. Everyone works hard and pulls together as a team. Our colleagues are all very social and the trainees all get on well and support each other."
First year trainee, Birmingham
"Trainees enjoy a good social life together and in addition the firm is constantly hosting different styles of events for its employees. There is a friendliness which is bolstered by the open-plan office space."
First year trainee, Sheffield
"The firm very much work as a team and there are good socials in the office. Many of my work colleagues are also my friends outside work."
First year trainee, Bristol
"Friendly, good work/life balance, everyone works hard but likes to socialise together after work too particularly on a Friday."
Second year trainee, London
"There are a number of social events each year, and charity events that IM employees can get involved in. One area I think we could improve is vacation scheme social events: we need a bigger budget for this."
Second year trainee, Leeds
"The firm doesn't have one culture. Each department has its own culture and approach to work. Overall the culture is good. Some partners are very approachable, others less so, but that is usually down to how busy they are. Teams work well together for the most part and over the year cross departmental socialising and teamwork has developed as a result of moving seats and having contact with other offices."
First year trainee, Leeds
"There is a very friendly atmosphere within the office. The Partners and supervisors are approachable. There are some organised office events such as a Christmas party and end of year party and these are always well attended. Most social events are informal and these are usually attended by a range of people from all levels of the firm. There is a good work/life balance at the firm."
First year trainee, Leeds
"The culture can vary a lot between offices. From personal experience there is little to no hierarchy, all partners are extremely approachable and friendly which filters down through the office. Majority are willing to help on any task. As the office grows the social activities within the office are increasing significantly."
Second year trainee, Bristol
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