Vacation scheme application tips
Here are a few tips you should keep in mind when putting together your application.
Vacation schemes are placements open from your second year of university, which allow you to gain real, hands-on experience in a law firm. They are an important part of your training and an essential step for your career later on, with firms likelier to hire from their previous vacation scheme intake.
Because of this, competition for places is understandably high, so you’ll want to make sure you’re standing out from the crowd in your application.
Research the firm you’re applying to
Firms will be sifting through thousands of applications, many of which will be the same one sent to other schemes, with just the name changed. It’s important that you take your time to research the firm, and see in what ways the practice areas they specialise in interest you. This will make your application far more interesting and allow you to refer back to the firm as you set out your interests.
For example, this could be through researching notable cases and explaining what you find interesting about them. Alternatively, you might write about a news story which caught your eye, in which case you can refer back to the firm’s area of expertise in order to make your application more relevant and likelier to get noticed.
In the end, you’ll be better off sending a few specifically crafted applications than sending off the same identikit one in batches. Attending open days and careers fairs is also a great way to learn about the specifics of a firm, as you’ll have the opportunity to speak to a representative face-to-face and get an idea of the practice areas they work in.
Triple-check your application for typos
Having your application written properly, with no spelling or grammatical errors, really is crucial before you send it. Make sure you’ve read over it again and again - any errors will penalise you massively when firms are looking through applications. It’s also important to keep your writing straightforward and understandable for whoever will be reading. Even if long sentences with multiple clauses and legal terms might show off your knowledge, law firms will be looking to take on someone who can convey their ideas in a clear and concise way.
Make sure to highlight relevant past experience
Even if you’ll still be at university, firms will expect you to be able to link the skills they’re looking for to any past experiences you’ve had, whether that be academic or professional. This will appear in application forms, as the employer will want to see you talk about your specific areas of interest and how any extra-curricular activities, summer jobs or first-year study helped you to narrow them down.
Where can I find vacation scheme opportunities?
Ready to start an application for a vacation scheme? Head on over to the jobs section of our website with the latest placements available!