Allen & Overy (A&O) trainees will undertake a business-orientated Legal Practice Course, gaining a business MA at the end of their training contract, from 2015.
In a drive to boost its young lawyers’ commercial awareness, the magic circle firm will introduce a bespoke course that will build business elements into the LPC and continue into the training contract.
A series of business modules will be included on the LPC and taught via a combination of online and face-to-face classes.
Then, during the training contract, trainees will undertake a business intelligence project on a relevant topic such as an industry sector or client. On completion of this they will receive an MA (LPC with Business) qualification.
“We’re ensuring our lawyers aren’t just experts in the law, but understand what makes our clients tick,” said the firm’s training principal David Campbell. “They don’t want to read a 20-page essay on a legal point; they want to know what the practical effects on their business will be. At the moment our trainees learn on the job: this will enable them to hit the ground running.”
Following a competitive tender, A&O will run the course in conjunction with BPP, marking a switch from its current preferred LPC provider, the University of Law.
“We’ve been very happy with the University of Law and the quality of the GDL and LPC they provide,” said Campbell. “We put it out to tender and felt that BPP just had the edge on the business focus.”
BPP, which has a school of business in addition to its law school, already runs a similar MBA program with Simmons & Simmons (28 June 2012).
Last week, A&O became the first firm to announce its spring 2014 NQ retention, posting an 84 per cent rate (13 December 2013).