The Freshfields application process is designed to help them identify the candidates who have what they are looking for. This guide will take you through the application process for training contract and vacation schemes, as they follow the same process. Applicants for other jobs will find the information contained in here useful even if their recruitment does not follow the same path.
The application form is your first opportunity to tell the firm about yourself. It will be in the only piece of information they have about you when making the decision whether to invite you to the next stage. The application form contains eight sections asking for information about you. However the most vital section of the form is the personal statement. This section gives you 850 words (or 5,000 characters) to tell the recruitment team at Freshfields about you, your choice of career, your past experiences, and your skills. Before you start, review the competencies and understand what the firm are looking for.
Topics to cover (from the Freshfields guide - The Perfect Application):
There is a lot riding on this personal statement, and therefore it is important that you get it right first time. For more tips about how to complete your Freshfields application form, take a look at our blog dedicated to each section of a law firm application.
Once you have submitted your application form, you are automatically invited to sit an online verbal reasoning test. You will have seven days to complete the test. Once you have completed the test, your application and test results will be reviewed. Freshfield’s online verbal reasoning test is designed by SHL, one of the largest providers of psychometric tests. You are tested on your ability to understand, analyse and interpret work related texts. You will be scored in the test against a group of similar applicants for a similar role. It is therefore important that you not only prepare to get a good score, but that you practice to be better than the rest of your field. JobTestPrep have developed verbal reasoning practice packs that prepare you specifically for the SHL test.
If your application form and verbal reasoning test score show that you have what Freshfields is looking for, you are invited to a half day assessment day at the firm’s Fleet Street offices. There are three parts to this day, which can take place in any order.
The writing exercise is designed to test your ability to analyse written texts and write information clearly for the use of others. You have 45 minutes to review a set of draft documents, highlight any mistakes included in the text, discuss any ambiguities you can find, and redraft a section of the report so that it is clear and correct. You do not need to have any legal knowledge for this test, you are being tested on your ability to analyse written texts. The writing exercise requires you to balance between processing large amounts of information and writing corrections within a short period of time. See how JobTestPrep can help you practice this balance with our written exercise pack.
This is an hour long interview which aims to analyse your analytical skills and thinking ability, as well as your commercial acumen and legal understanding. You are given 20 minutes to read a business based article, which you will then be questioned about by a partner and an associate. The article you are given will come from any source, but is likely to be a current article from The Economist or The Financial Times. You are asked at the start of the interview to summarise the article as concisely as you can, then you are asked questions on the content of the article, before the conversation moves on to wider topics based on the subject of the article. Some of the questions on the article include: how could this article be used to bring in new business to the firm; and which departments would be involved in a case such as this one. JobTestPrep have prepared a case study practice package that can help you in this section.
There is time at the end of this interview to ask the interviewers any questions you may have. Don’t forget to prepare some questions before coming in to interview.
There is a lot riding on this interview, and as well as the reading exercise which starts off the interview, you will need to be unphased by the questions you face on the article. The best way to appear confident in an interview is to practice in interview conditions. JobTestPrep’s interview preparation package can help you get in that all important interview practice ahead of time.
The general interview is another hour long interview, with a new set of interviewers, again a partner and associate. This interview aims to find out more about you, and how you demonstrate your skills against the competencies listed above. This is a more informal interview than the article interview, and you will not be asked competency based questions. You will be asked about the information contained on your CV.
Some of the likely questions asked in this interview are:
This interview will ask very different questions to the other interview you will have on the day, and you may want to think about how to answer questions about yourself rather than on your opinions. See how JobTestPrep’s interview preparation package can give you tips here.
Freshfields is a magic circle law firm, and one of the largest law firms in the world. Freshfields is not looking for good lawyers, they are looking for great lawyers. To them great lawyers encapsulate all the qualities listed above, and more. Freshfields is the fourth largest law firm in the world, with over 2,500 lawyers in 28 offices around the world, and they receive more than 3,000 applications each year, so competition is high for 100 training contract places. Freshfields recruits on a rolling basis, so better to get applications in early. This article has guided you through the Freshfields application process, highlighting the resources available to help you improve the quality of your application. Start practising today. Good luck!