Accutrainee has agreed its first training contract for an aspiring lawyer, at an undisclosed Top 20 law firm.
Flora Hussey is the first trainee to be recruited by Accutrainee and began her training contract this summer at London-based New Quadrant Partners, a boutique private client legal practice and advisory service.
Hussey will also spend three months focusing on contentious work at an undisclosed Top 20 law firm.
Under Accutrainee’s new solicitor training contract model, using Solicitors Regulation Authority approved training contracts, trainees are taken on by Accutrainee but are seconded to law firms and in-house legal departments, usually more than one, during their training contract.
More than 600 aspiring lawyers have so far approached Accutrainee to sign up to the programme since its launch in September 2011, although only a small minority of these have been accepted onto its books.
To date the training business has had six organisations commit to the programme, made up of two in-house legal teams and four law firms, including New Quadrant and Olswang.
Founder and CEO Susan Cooper confirmed that other trainees would soon follow but added: “our selection procedure is very robust and similar to that at large city law firms. We are still looking for excellent candidates but those who for whatever reason have failed to secure a training contract.”
Apart from initial CV sorting and interviewing Accutrainee also invites candidates to an assessment centre at which they are asked to give presentations and complete written exercises.
Cooper added “We can spend more time and resources on them than law firms that have so much else to do and we can invite a lot more in. Sometimes it is a question of confidence or just a bit of mentoring and we consider each candidate as an individual.
“We will focus on monitoring each of our trainee’s progress and development throughout their training contracts to ensure they are on track, giving them the support they need along the way,” she said.