Although there’s no limit on the number of training contracts you can apply for, you should keep in mind that each application should be carefully crafted and be specifically tailored to the firm you’re applying for. This means that you’ll need to put in extensive research as you try to show the recruiter that you understand the requirements of the firm as well as their practice areas.
As with vacation schemes, the approach of sending off the same application to a long list of firms won’t work and recruiters will quickly dismiss it - the best approach is to pick out the firms that fit with your interests in the legal sector and meticulously put together an application that fits them.
On the other hand, you shouldn’t put all your eggs in one basket and only apply for one, even if you feel that it’s the ideal firm - you might have spent a period of work experience there and decided it was the company for you. It’s best to keep your options open and go for a wider range of law firms that deal in areas that interest you.
How long should I spend on applications?
In terms of numbers, it’s recommended that you spend your time on around 10 applications - you should bear in mind that application forms can take a day’s worth of work to complete, with many questions requiring essay-length answers.
If you’re able to show that you’re committed enough to carry out that level of work in your application, it will show to recruiters that you can take on the workload required of trainees over the course of the two-year placement.
When should I apply for training contracts?
If you’re a law student, you’ll be expected to start applying two years before you would start, from the summer of your second year onwards. This takes into account the year-long Legal Practice Course (LPC) you will undertake after graduation, or the Solicitors Qualifying Examination (SQE) from autumn 2021.
Law firms will also encourage those coming from other academic backgrounds to apply once they’ve graduated, although they will have to undertake a conversion course before joining.
Where can I get more information on training contracts?
If you’d like to find out more about training contracts and see the latest opportunities, head over to the dedicated section of our website!