|Chambers and Partners|
|Journalism and publishing|
|Medium-size business (50-249 employees)|
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A day in the life of a Researcher in the United Kingdom
What I do
I work for a company that ranks and researches law firms. Specifically I work in the Student Team which mainly reviews the training contracts provided by solicitors firms and pupillages by barristers chambers in the UK. As well as the junior associate programmes of US law firms.
My day is typically spent interviewing trainee solicitors, working out the pros and cons of being a trainee at their respective firm and then writing a semi humorous feature on the programme.
Skills I use and how I developed them
Keeping things short.
1) How to interview somebody.
2) Building rapport quickly to get them to open up.
3) Extracting common themes out of what dozens of interviewees say, condensing their accounts into a factual narrative.
4) Juggling interviewing, writing and background research with multiple deadlines
What I like most
It's pretty interesting getting to learn about the often large but difficult to discern differences between law firms and their training programmes. The differences can be huge but not immediately obvious.
What I like least
When dealing with a large firm its very easy to spend 2 days interviewing trainees straight. By the time you reach the end it's hard for the interviews to not start blurring together.
What surprised me most
Law firms are often very similar to one another in ways you may think they are significantly different. They are also significantly different in ways you may think they are very much alike.
My advice to students considering work
Applying for internships, volunteering opportunities and graduate jobs can be excruciating. I can't say I really enjoyed job hunting much and writing your first CV/Cover Letter can feel like you are unjustifiably bragging. Do keep in mind that most experiences are useful, something as simple as bar work involves working under pressure, time management, attention to detail. Traits that often come up as requirements in job descriptions. Don't undersell yourself,
Also when it comes to writing your CV and Cover Letter, the point is to show that your skills and experience match the job requirements. Run through each requirement and make sure that in both your CV and Cover Letter you have clearly giving examples of how you have demonstrated each requirement.
If you like the look of Alex’s profile, the next steps are down to you! You can send Alex a message to find out more about their career journey. If you feel you would benefit from more in-depth conversations, ask Alex to be your mentor.