Herbert Smith overhauls selection procedure

Herbert Smith has emerged as the latest law firm to add an extra layer to its training contract selection procedure in a bid to expose weak candidates at the initial application stage.

The City firm has officially introduced a verbal reasoning test as part of its online application process after piloting the scheme on its spring and summer vacation scheme candidates earlier this year.

Graduate recruitment manager Peter Chater said: “We found that the applicants who passed the verbal reasoning test were generally the best candidates during the vacation schemes and were subsequently offered training contracts.”

Meanwhile, a number of other firms have also been overhauling their selection procedures to recruit the strongest candidates.

Berwin Leighton Paisner, for instance, has added two new exercises to its recruitment process to test for “intellectual ability”.

Elsewhere, DLA Piper has introduced what it calls a visual accuracy test where students, who have successfully completed an assessment day, are given a contract to correct for spelling and grammatical errors.

LG is conducting a comprehensive review of its selection procedure, which currently comprises a panel interview and lunch.