Trainee Solicitor Recruitment

The Training Contract

The normal Training Contract consists of 4 x 6 months seats although some seats could last for a full year. The trainee would carry out a minimum of 3 seats and a maximum of 4 seats during a 2 year Training Contract. The training principal would consult with the trainees during the Training Contract as to the trainee’s seat preference to try to accommodate his/her requirements wherever possible.

Sills & Betteridge is very focused on promotion and career progression within the Firm and likes to train and promote its staff internally. The Firm therefore tries where possible, to offer the trainee a Permanent Contract of Employment with the Firm following qualification, although this cannot always be possible. The Firm would take into account the business needs and the performance of the individual throughout the trainee’s Training Contract.

The Firm offers the opportunity for the new trainee to meet the other trainees in the Firm prior to his/her start date by inviting the trainee to lunch at a local restaurant over the summer. This is a good way of the trainee getting to know a few people in the Firm prior to the start date.

The Training Contract would normally commence in September and the induction will commence on the first day.

Training and Development

The Firm’s trainees are assigned a supervisor during each seat in the Training Contract. This would normally be the Department Head in the department that the trainee is in. The training principal would meet with the trainee periodically during the course of the 2 year Training Contract to determine the trainee’s progress. The supervisor plays a key role in the development of the trainee during the Training Contract. The supervisor is responsible for giving the trainee guidance and feedback throughout to enable the trainee to get the most out of the Training Contract.

There are guidelines set by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) for trainees that we adhere to and it is important that the trainee fulfils the requirements of the SRA during his/her Training Contract. There are key standards of competence that have to be met which are given to the trainee during induction.

At the start of each seat the trainee sets objectives with his/her supervisor in line with the SRA’s key standards of competence. It is important that the trainee keeps a training record during his/her seats and whenever the trainee learns something new it must be recorded onto the training record. Half way through the seat the trainee will meet with his/her supervisor to determine the trainee’s progress. At this time the supervisor and trainee would set objectives for the final 3 months of the seat to ensure that the trainee is on track to fulfil all of the key standards and objectives set at the start of the seat. The trainee will be able to meet different objectives in different seats/departments so it is important that the trainee sets different objectives in each, tailored to the work carried out in the department in order to fulfil all of the key standards of competence set by the SRA.

The trainee will be given a variety of work during the Training Contract which is not limited to giving clients legal advice. The trainee is expected to be involved in the development of the Firm through networking and charity events etc.

The Firm runs its own Continuing Professional Development (CPD) courses for its solicitors, which it sells out to other solicitors’ firms. This gives Sills & Betteridge’s trainees an advantage over other trainees from different firms in the area, in that the Firm’s trainees will be able to attend all of the Firm’s CPD courses during the year in the different areas of law that we cover extending the trainee’s professional development.


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