Allen & Overy: Your FREE guide to a career in Law!
Tuesday 7th Dec 2021
We interviewed Aneesha Jagatia, a Trainee Solicitor at Allen & Overy who has kindly shared some valuable tips and advice on how she got herself a job working at a Magic Circle Law Firm. If you are interested in exploring a career in Law, then keep reading!
One of the biggest pieces of advice that Aneesha touches on, is the importance of networking and attending external events with Allen & Overy to understand more about the firm and the endless opportunities you have to start your career in Law. Sign up to our FREE event with Allen & Overy on Tuesday 1st February to discover more about A&O and what they do.
What is your name?
What company do you work for?
Allen & Overy LLP (A&O)
What is your current job title?
What made you decide to work at Allen & Overy?
When considering which firms to apply to, I interacted with different law firms as much as possible at law fairs, insight days and at careers events. What set A&O apart beyond the exposure at a junior level to complex and multijurisdictional work, extensive training and cutting edge technology was the supportive, open and friendly culture.
The reputation of A&O allows its lawyers to work on some of the most high-profile and challenging transactions, making it even more crucial that all lawyers at the firm feel supported throughout their careers. In prioritising this supportive culture, A&O struck me as a firm that I could progress my career at whilst also prioritising my wellbeing.
What piece of advice would you give to those leaving school in the next year who are confused about their options?
Be open minded. I would suggest that students attend a variety of careers events run by their school or external organisations and remain open to exploring new opportunities. Students shouldn’t be afraid of considering routes that are not traditional or common among their peers.
What’s one thing that surprised you about working for a Magic Circle Law Firm, like Allen & Overy?
The (lack of) hierarchy. Despite the different roles within the firm, the culture at A&O feels very open and flat. All of the people I work with including partners are very approachable and adopt an open door policy. I always feel welcome to drop in to ask any questions or just for a chat.
In 150 words, describe what a normal day for you tends to look like…
I check my emails in the morning for anything that has come in from the previous evening and make a note of anything I need to action later. I keep my morning commute free and listen to a podcast or news briefing. Once I arrive at the office, I get breakfast from the canteen which I eat on one of the roof terraces if it’s a nice day. Once I look through my emails, I usually am briefed by my trainer on any new matters that we will be working on. I spend my day reviewing legal documents, providing comments to other law firms and attending update meetings with associates to discuss the progress of various deals. Once I finish my working day, I usually go to the office gym or play netball with the A&O team, meet some of the other trainees for a drink at the office bar or meet my friends for dinner.
What would you say is the most challenging part of the job and what is the most enjoyable?
The first few weeks in a new department are always the most challenging, particularly because A&O is a full-service commercial firm and you may be having to get to grips with new concepts, terminology and areas of the law that you’ve not yet experienced. However, the teams are all very supportive and the firm prioritises training, meaning that you quickly learn the ropes and find yourself contributing to your new team from day one!
What would you say, makes your application stand out amongst others when applying for Allen & Overy?
I think applications are always strongest when students demonstrate the skills they have acquired using tangible examples of previous experience. It’s important not to underestimate the value of non-legal work experience as well. This could include leadership positions at school, volunteering, retail jobs, summer roles at public events and so on. The strongest applications then go a step further to draw out the transferrable skills gained from previous experiences and then link these to the role that they are applying for. The best way to do this is for students to discuss how their skills can add value to the work they will be doing. This therefore requires attendance at outreach events and in-depth research to understand the nature of each role at A&O.
What are 3 tips you would give to someone who is considering applying for an apprenticeship at Allen & Overy?
1.Attend as many A&O Solicitor Apprenticeship outreach events as possible to get to know the firm.
2.Engage with the materials on the Solicitor Apprenticeship website to understand the nature of the role to tailor your application as much as possible.
3.Look at the skills required to succeed as a Solicitor Apprentice on the website. Think about the different ways you have cultivated this skillset and then incorporate these examples into your application.
If you haven’t already, make sure to sign up to our FREE event on Tuesday 1st February with Allen & Overy. We look forward to seeing you there!