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Meet the recruiter

Lucy De St Croix

Lucy De St Croix

Lucy De St Croix (she/her) is the graduate recruitment and development officer at Trowers & Hamlins LLP. She is based at the London office and has been at the firm for two and a half years.

What has been your most memorable moment in the job?

The most memorable part of my role so far was when the first cohort of trainees, who I had played a role in recruiting, started their training contract. To see the full process of someone attending our open day, summer vacation scheme and then to become a trainee solicitor was very rewarding.

Does your firm run a vacation scheme?

We run two two-week schemes in June and July each year for 46 students in total. You can apply for our schemes if you are a penultimate year law student, final year law or non-law student, or graduate. It is a great way to find out more about the firm’s culture and to experience the work of a trainee. You will also have the opportunity to be assessed for a training contract at the end of the scheme.

Although our most recent summer vacation scheme was virtual, the students still completed work within departments and attended different talks and workshops over the two weeks. The feedback from attendees was really positive and it was great to still be able to offer this opportunity. Going forward, I think there are many benefits to attending a scheme in person but there are also elements of a virtual scheme that we will continue to use in the future.

What kind of work can candidates expect to experience during the vacation scheme?

Our candidates get to experience the work of a trainee while they are with us. This ranges from research tasks, drafting documents to attending meetings and making client calls. Each candidate has a supervisor to guide them over the two weeks and a trainee buddy to provide support.

In addition to this, the candidate will attend sessions and workshops to build their skills. On our last summer vacation scheme, the candidates attended a Legal Hackathon where they designed and built a solution to streamline legal operations and improve our service to clients. This allowed the candidates to really get creative and focus on delivering client solutions through legal technology and innovation. The winning candidates won an award!

What key skills does your firm look for in candidates when they apply?

We are looking for candidates who are motivated, driven, enthusiastic, and who possess great communication skills.

At Trowers, you will be working with a range of clients and in different sized teams, so it is important that you can communicate clearly.

How is the firm adopting the Solicitors Qualifying Exam (SQE)?

Our first cohort of trainees who will train via the SQE route will start in May 2024. We are currently finalising the details and will update our website once confirmed.

What is the most common way that candidates let themselves down in their applications?

Apart from failing to check for spelling mistakes and getting the firm name wrong, candidates often don’t focus on the question being asked. For instance, we are interested in understanding why you are applying to Trowers specifically, rather than a law firm in general.

Answering this correctly shows that you have done your research on the firm and can demonstrate why you want to work here. It is an advantage when you can speak about our practice areas, our clients and the culture, among other things.

Should candidates use examples of non-legal work experience in their applications?

Yes, this is important, and candidates don’t always make full use of the work experience section of the application form. Instead, they tend to focus on their legal work experience without going into detail about any non-legal work they have completed.

Many of the essential skills we look for in a trainee can be developed within a non-legal environment. For instance, working in a busy, fast-paced retail job with customers indicates that you have excellent communication skills and can manage different demands and deadlines. Take the time to consider your experiences and think about the skills you have gained.

How important is commercial awareness and how can candidates show they have this skill in their applications?

It is important that candidates understand how we operate as a business, the areas we work within and what may affect our clients. There are quick and easy ways of staying up-to-date with current affairs and our business, for example by looking at the recent news on our website or across our social media platforms. We look at your commercial awareness from the application stage.

How did the firm adapt to covid-19?

Trowers already had a flexible working policy in place so while lockdown was a big change for everyone, we were lucky to have a great IT team to help us adapt. The firm also provided lots of support to help us stay connected with our colleagues and avoid feeling overwhelmed with all the changes.

We had to quickly move our assessment days, events and summer vacation scheme online but with the assistance of Zoom, we still provided insightful and useful experiences for candidates.

The firm has now adopted a flexible working model, so we go into the office around two to three days each week. It has been great to see people in person again.

What’s your favourite way to unwind from work?

I enjoy spending time with friends and family, watching reality TV and reading a good book.