A&O’s retention falls as the firm cuts trainee numbers

Allen & Overy today posted a retention rate of 72 per cent for its autumn 2013 qualifiers while also revealing that it is set to cut its trainee intake from 2015.

The magic circle firm offered 45 newly-qualified (NQ) positions to 54 trainees. Of those 45, 39 accepted the firm’s offer of employment. They will join both the London office and overseas offices.

Last autumn the firm retained 79 per cent of its trainees, giving NQ roles to 46 of 58 trainees. In spring 2013, it retained 37 of 53 while in spring 2012 it held onto 51 of 57 trainees, a retention rate of 89 per cent.

A&O training principal David Campbell said: “The job market for NQs continues to be tough but we are pleased to have been able to offer jobs to so many of our trainees. A number of this year’s intake decided not to accept offers, so our retention rate is lower than we expected.”

Allen & Overy also revealed that it is set to trim its trainee intake to 85 from 2015. It currently has 105 trainees qualifying at the firm each year, but is recruiting 90 trainees per year after a June 2011 decision to scale back the number of training contracts it offers from 2014.

Graduate recruitment partner Richard Hough: “We aim to recruit for the long-term as well as providing a high quality training contract. Managing our intake numbers means that we aren’t just offering our trainees excellent training and experience, but also a strong prospect of a long-term career with the firm after qualification.”