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Work experience blog – Donna Barnett

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Work experience blog – Donna Barnett

I have just completed the twoweeks professional work experience programme with Rollits and I hada brilliant, useful and insightful two weeks. I applied to do theprogramme with the intention of seeing how a large commercial firmoperates and also to confirm some of my questions and queriesregarding which electives to take on my LPC which I am commencingin September this year. As my career ambition is to work within alarge commercial firm and I did my degree at the University of HullRollits was the perfect choice being a very prestigious law firmthat offered hands on experience and was in Hull; which is theplace I still consider to be home.

The work experience placementconsisted of a number of elements with three different 'seats'being the principle structure, therefore it was treated like a minitraining contract. We also received numerous talks while we werethere and did a marketing task and a presentation which all workedtogether to provide a fantastic insight into not just the law, butthe overall business of Rollits and also worked to develop andstrengthen a number of key skills.

I arrived at the Hull officeon Monday morning feeling slightly nervous but excited for theforthcoming two weeks; my nerves were immediately eased uponmeeting my fellow work experience colleagues who were all extremelyfriendly. We were then introduced to Mark (a Partner) and Libby (acurrent trainee) and were then taken on a tour around the office.During this tour the open door policy became evident with everymember of staff, despite how busy they were, being happy to sayhello and extend us their luck for the experience. I was then takento my first seat which was in Company and Commercial. I wasextremely excited about this as this was a great area of interestof mine and I was immediately made to feel welcome. I was providedwith a variety of work over the next three days including;compiling a file, drafting minutes for a meeting, completing astock transfer form and doing numerous research reports on suchtopics as whether shares can be reclassified and how to modify anemployee's terms and conditions of employment.

On the Wednesday we receivedtalks on finance, administration and IT. These talks proved to beboth entertaining and extremely useful in providing an insight intothe full workings of a law firm. I was given the opportunity to aska number of questions which were all answered and I feel that Igained a lot of useful information which will help me a lot in myfuture career.

The following three days werespent in my second seat, Dispute Resolution. I found this seat tobe extremely welcoming and very hands on. Upon arrival the firstmorning all members of the team welcomed me and I was provided witha wide variety of work from the trainee, associate and partner.This work included things such as; looking through an ongoing caseand drafting a letter for issue of proceedings, drafting a parkingnotice and doing a number of research reports on such things aswhat can be defined as a 'genuine business need' and into a currenthigh profile media case. The work done in this department was sovaried and interesting that I found a new love for disputeresolution as it was something that really grasped my attentionwhilst I was here.

On the Monday of the secondweek we were taken to the York office where we received a marketingtalk, prepared for a marketing exercise and were also taken for alovely lunch! I had the fishcakes which were gorgeous and enjoyedhaving the opportunity to talk about a number of interesting topicsincluding dogs, baby names and obviously the world of law! Withfull stomachs we headed back to the office and presented outmarketing exercise, which we did in girls v boys teams which madeit all the more fun. I found it useful presenting our ideas andseeing how marketing works within a law firm, also it was nice tosee the York office as it is very different to the Hull one and wegot the opportunity to meet a lot of people.

The final three days werespent in the property department which I also really enjoyed. I waslooked after by the current trainee Sam who was extremely helpfuland provided me with a large variety of work including: Drafting anAP1 form, completing an SDLT form, doing a SIM search, amending anumber of SDLT forms, writing a notice of underlease and compilingtwo pieces of information gathered through looking through twoseparate case files. I found the work provided here to be the mosthands on and Sam was extremely helpful in coming in and guiding methrough the forms and showing me what a typical day for her waslike. I was also taken to the weekly meeting where there was aguest speaker which was fun! On the Thursday we also had thedaunting experience of doing our presentations, after they had beenthe topic of many nervous discussions between the other workexperience students and myself I must say that I was feeling quiteexcited but also anxious about presenting mine on three items Iwould take to a desert island. However, the experience was fun andmy presentation, which included such things as an iron man suit,received a few giggles which I was relieved about!

I had such a fun and usefultwo weeks at Rollits and I would like to thank everybody there forthe experience. It has been very useful and provided me with somuch information and a brilliant insight into the areas and firm inwhich I aspire to be a part of. I would definitely recommend thisexperience to anybody pursuing a commercial legalcareer.


This article is for general guidance only. It provides useful information in a concise form. Action should not be taken without obtaining specific legal advice.

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This article is for general guidance only. It provides useful information in a concise form. Action should not be taken without obtaining specific legal advice.
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