RPC, also known as Reynolds Porter Chamberlain LLP, RPC have undergone some changes in their business over time. This has added to their popularity, with over 1,000 applicants for the 22 trainee spaces on offer (20 in London, 2 in Bristol). With competition this stiff, you will need to prove that you are one of the best, time and again throughout the recruitment process. RPC use several tests and assessments for every recruit, be it an experienced hire, trainee or summer intern. Read more about these assessments and how to prepare for them with JobTestPrep’s tailored preparation packs. The RPC selection processes differ slightly for experienced hires, training contracts and vacation schemes, but they all have elements in common.
Training contract and vacation scheme applicants are asked to complete an application form. This form includes several questions for you to tell the recruiting team more about yourself, as well as several commercial questions such as “What does the role of a commercial lawyer in business mean to you?” and “Identify a current commercial issues which has attracted your attention recently. Please explain why you have identified this issue and why you consider it to be significant to the stakeholders involved.”
Each answer requires a lot of information from you, but in a further twist, you are allocated just 250 words per answer. The firm is looking for evidence of your research into your answer, but also the ability to be concise and draw out the key points in your answer. You need to impress with this form, so take your time to plan your answers and ensure that you include only the most important information.
If your application form impresses, applicants to RPC for most positions are next asked to take a critical thinking test. This test is a verbal based test looking at how you look at a situation, assess it, consider and understand multiple perspectives and separate the facts from opinion. Critical thinking tests are also interested in how you use the information available to solve problems. Learn more about the skills needed in a critical thinking test, and take practice tests with our Watson-Glaser critical thinking test preparation pack.
If you have successfully passed the online test, the next stage for training contract applicants is the RPC assessment day. Other applicants may go straight through to interview. RPC hold five assessment days in total when deciding who to take on as a trainee.
The assessment centre day contains several exercises listed below, as well as trainee-led tour of the firm; an informal lunch; and a presentation from Partner and Q&A session.
You may be given a topic to prepare a presentation ahead of your assessment day. All instructions are given in your assessment centre invitation. Presentations can be nerve wracking as they require you to address a group of people, some of whom will be your superiors, or in this case the recruitment team. Get tips on how to prepare an effective presentation and deliver it confidently with our presentation tips and blog.
In this exercise, the assessors are looking at how you communicate with others in your team. You are assessed on both your own individual contributions and on how you listen to, work with and develop further the ideas given by others in your team. Develop your networking strategy with our group exercises preparation pages.
Experienced hire applicants may experience one or more interviews from partners or managers and HR.
Vacation scheme applicants will have an interview as the second and final stage of their application with a manager and/or HR.
Training contract applicants’ interview is part of the assessment day.
Ahead of your RPC interview, review the information in your application, as you may be asked questions about the information you included, or about your answers to the commercial or competency questions. Most questions in interviews will be competency based, looking at whether you have the skills to be successful at RPC. There may also be some questions asking you about your motivations in wanting to work at RPC. Prepare answers including examples of where you have demonstrated the desired skills in the past using the STAR method. You are also advised to read up on RPC and their position in the market, their clients and cases and the area of law you are interested in, as the interviewers are looking for evidence that you know about them.
Once you have pulled together all your answers, rehearse your delivery, ensuring that you answer the questions and can get your answers out without stumbling. The best way to do this is with a mock interview. Our interview preparation package gives you that two way interview experience with guidance from a trained assessor to help you improve the next time.