The application process for a job with Ince & Co. is long and testing. It is designed this way to ensure that the firm identifies the best candidates. You will have to pass through a number of stages, each one testing your skills in a new way, before you receive a job offer. We will examine each stage in turn, and what you need to prepare so you can produce your best performance and progress through to the next stage. We are focusing on the graduate training scheme application process as it is the most exhaustive. Applicants to jobs at other levels will find much of the information useful.
The online application form is your first opportunity to impress the recruitment team at Ince & Co. The most important part of the application both for you and for the recruiters is the cover letter. It is your opportunity to put forward your case; why you want to become a lawyer, and why you want to work with Ince & Co. in particular. The cover letter should not include any information available elsewhere on the form. It is recommended that you research the firm and the unique position it fills before starting to fill in the form. Before you start your form, get some pointers on how to approach it with our series of law firm application form blog entries. The cover letter is your chance to sell yourself to the firm, which can be a daunting task.
The next stage of the application process is the Watson Glaser online critical thinking test. Produced by Pearson, the Watson Glaser is aims to test your ability to take a piece of information in front of you question it critically. There are five areas of critical thinking tested in the Watson Glaser test:
The Watson-Glaser test is looking for a different set of thought processes to other tests usually used in job application processes, and will ask you questions you may never have answered before. Using JobTestPrep’s Watson-Glaser practice pack can help you prepare to improve your scores in the real thing.
If you successfully pass the critical thinking test, you will be invited to a half day interview day. This half day includes an interview as well as several tests.
First up on the agenda for the assessment day are two tests designed to test your writing abilities and soft skills. You will take a spelling and grammar quiz, and undertake a letter writing exercise. Take the spelling and grammar test slowly and consider your answers. If you know that you have weaknesses in your spelling and grammar try to revise the correct formats ahead of the session. Practice for the letter writing test is more focused on how to write an effective letter. See how JobTestPrep can help you prepare for the writing tests here.
The decision to include an in-tray exercise is unusual for a law firm, but the firm put a lot of faith in the test as a way of testing your thought processes. The in-tray exercise is a paper based exercise. You have 15 minutes to prepare before the interview with a partner begins. You are given a list of six emails in your inbox which you are asked to prioritise, and explain your ordering to the partner. The interviewer will ask you to justify your decisions, and will give you additional information, which may change your opinions. The in tray exercise is designed to test your resolve, your logical thinking, and your ability to justify your choices.
Some people say that you cannot rehearse an in-tray exercise, but it has been conclusively proven that practice in advance of any test will mean that you are prepared for the type of task you will have to carry out. See JobTestPrep’s in-tray and e-tray exercise practice pack here.
The in-tray exercise is followed by a partner interview. There are either two partners in the interview, or a partner and a member of the recruitment team. The interview opens with the discussion about the in-tray exercise outlined above, designed to examine how you cope under pressure. There are also the more expected interview questions about your CV and motivations for choosing law and Ince & Co in particular. You are notified in advance who the partner or partners in your interview are, so take advantage of this knowledge to research them, their area of practice, and prepare questions to ask them in the interview.
Some past questions in interviews with Ince & Co. include:
As well as the importance of preparing answers that can be used in common and uncommon questions, it is important to gain practice in interviewing in general, answering questions in pressurised conditions, and the overall impression you make. See how JobTestPrep can help you prepare for interviews with our interview preparation package.
Top tips for the interview include:
These are just some tips for creating a good impression in an interview. JobTestPrep’s website contains numerous resources for interview day. See how we can help you practice your interview technique here.
The day ends with a tour of the offices given by a current trainee. Be sure to engage with the trainee, ask for information and in turn ask them questions about their experiences with the firm, and the law they are practising.
Ince & Co’s interview day includes some unusual tests that you may not see again. The firm place particular emphasis on your performance in the in-tray exercise. As always practice is key, and this page has run you through the process and the resources that are available from JobTestPrep for you to use to help you navigate through. Good luck.