Work Experience Blog - Naomi Bond

Naomi Bond

I have just finished my last day on the work experience placement at Rollits in the York office, and it has been an excellent two weeks. I applied to do the placement at Rollits in order to gain experience and insight into what life as a lawyer at a large regional commercial firm is like. Now at the end of my placement, I can honestly say that my expectations of what I would gain from this experience have been exceeded beyond what I had hoped for.

The two week work experience placement is structured like a mini training contract, and therefore allows you to spend time in each of the firm's core departments. I have also attended a range of informal presentations, participated in a marketing task, and have given a short presentation. Overall, this placement has provided me with a clear and unique understanding as to how Rollits operates both as a law firm, and as a business.

On the morning of the first day I arrived at the York office with butterflies in my stomach. However, after an introductory session with Sarah Greendale (a solicitor) and Sophie Wheeldon (a current trainee), my nerves were put at ease. I was then taken on a tour of the office by Sophie, and was made to feel very welcome by everyone. After the all-important health and safety induction, I was given my timetable for the two weeks and taken to my first seat in the Dispute Resolution Department. I was initially quite nervous about starting my first seat, but everyone in the department was so friendly and welcoming that I soon forgot my nerves. I was provided with a variety of work over the next three days, including doing a number of research reports on things such as the consequences for infringing patents, and whether or not the infamous 'Italian Torpedo' is still good law. Due to the varied and interesting nature of the work done in this department, I have developed a new found interest in this area of law. 

On the Tuesday I travelled over to Hull by train to attend a range of informal presentations. Once I arrived, I was introduced to Amy Marson (a trainee solicitor), who took me on a tour of the Hull office and introduced me to everyone.  I was then introduced to my fellow work experience colleagues who were all based in the Hull office. They were all very friendly, and after getting to know each other we all went along to the informal presentations on finance, administration and IT. I found these to be extremely informative, as they provided me with a new and comprehensive understanding, of the extensive inner workings of a law firm.

My next seat was in the Property and Private Capital department. I was extremely excited about this, as I had thoroughly enjoyed studying property law at university. I found this seat to be very hands on, and was excited to be able to gain experience working on ongoing client cases. I was looked after by the current trainee Sophie who was extremely helpful and was always happy to answer any of my questions (of which I had many!). She provided me with lots of varied and exciting work over the next three days, including doing a number of research reports on things such as the procedure for making a claim for adverse possession, drafting a DS1 and AP1 form, and organising client files. I was also given the opportunity to attend a number of client meetings during my time in this department, and I found it incredibly interesting being able to observe the solicitor client relationship first hand.

On the Wednesday of the second week, my fellow work experience colleagues came over to the York office. We were all given a marketing talk and were then asked to plan and present a short presentation based on potential marketing strategies that Rollits could use to attract future trainees. I was very pleased with our presentation, and felt that our contribution had been really valued and appreciated. The social side of things was not forgotten either as we were very kindly taken out for a lovely lunch! I had the burger, which was delicious, but most importantly I really enjoyed having the opportunity to get to meet some of the lawyers and trainees at Rollits outside of the office environment.

My final seat was in the Company and Commercial department. Once again I felt extremely welcome and was made to feel a valued member of the team. Whilst I am yet to study commercial law at university, all the employees were more than happy to take time out of their busy schedules to help me with any queries or questions I had. During the three days in this department I did a variety of work including completing a number of research reports on things such as the steps required to set up a company and what to include in a partnership agreement. On the Friday, at the end of the two week work experience placement, we had to make a presentation to members of the firm and our work experience colleagues. We had been presented with a wide array of sample questions covering a variety of topics to choose from at the beginning of the placement. I chose the question, 'Do you have a role model? If so who and why?' I was both excited and anxious about giving my presentation, but afterwards I felt very pleased with how it had gone, and that the opportunity had definitely increased my confidence in public speaking.

Overall, the two week placement at Rollits has provided me with an invaluable opportunity to gain a true insight into the firm, its culture and its people. I can honestly say that I have thoroughly enjoyed my time at Rollits, and would happily recommend and encourage any fellow students to apply to the Rollits work experience programme.

Naomi Bond, 2nd year Law, York University

Posted on: 10/07/2015

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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