Don Bingham* It may be a trick question because we all know that anyone working for a firm and assessing their breakout rooms, foyers and bathrooms is not only subjective, but hardly have the basis for comparison.
But nevertheless, the RollonFriday poll of the best law firm in London to work for chose Bird & Bird as Numero Uno.
“Loos are just incredible”, raved a trainee, “I would commute from home each morning to use the loos”. The free barista service (also does hot chocolate) was popular too, and there were shout-outs for the “acai bowl station” and “eggs benny for breakfast so you can be as basic as you want”.Bird & Bird trainee
Ashurst also scored well, (83%) with its smart new offices in the Fruit & Wool Exchange. Staff said it was, “vastly better ” than Appold Street, the firm’s home for over 30 years, and “finally the IT more or less works”. It was “absolutely amazing, feels like I am in Google”.
Weil, (82%) was also a winner, as befits a major Biglaw US-based player.
“Like working in a hotel,” said one respondent. “If anyone complains in this section they need to remove the silver spoon from their backside (and should leave)”, said a business services employee.
And down there at Canary Wharf Clifford Chance also scored big (81%) due in part because they have something no other firm can claim – in London at least – a swimming pool.
What Did They LOVE?
Apart from Clifford Chance’s pool, what else did the lawyers love?
The attractions were wide and varied, as one might expect. Toilets were a key ‘feature’ – beautiful or otherwise lacking in charm and fragrance – but there were a number of others that might surprise –
>> gluton free shortbread (Burgess Salmon – 88%)
>> The client lounge (Mishcon de Reya – 87%) – “fancy AF”
>> Office space – “I should not have anywhere near this amount of real estate as my office”. (Kirkland & Ellis)
>> Hdyroponic kitchen garden in the foyer (DLA Piper – 82%)
>> Free sanitary products in the female toilets, good coffee and the “very bright elevator lights. Did not realise I had acne until I got on a Macfarlanes elevator” (Macfarlanes – 78%)
Take the law firm office survey for what it’s worth. And one thing is some humour and a focus not so much on the breakout rooms, foyers, lounges and kitchens. Just follow your nose to the loos.