Ashurst Training Contracts & Interview Questions

Law Training Contract Application Specialists

Law Training Contract: Application Dates and Information

Ashurst applications open in the first week of January and close at the end of March. Training contracts will then commence two years after the application period. Assessment centres take place in May and applications can re-open in summer after the initial recruitment process, subject to demand.

Ashurst conducts a multifaceted online assessment that combines three areas – cognify, values fit, and emotify. Cognify requires you to complete a series of games that measure your analytical and problem solving abilities. Values Fit helps the firm to identify candidates who have a similar outlook to them. It ensures a ‘cultural fit’ between candidate and firm. Emotify requires that you complete two games measuring your interpersonal skills, leadership potential and capability.

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Law Training Contract: Firm Overview

Ashurst is a leading multinational law firm headquartered in London, part of the Silver Circle. It has 27 offices outside the UK, across 15 different countries, covering Asia, Australia, Europe, the Middle East and North America. It employs 1600 legal advisers. It is the 7th largest UK law firm by revenue. It has 400 partners. Principal focuses are M&A, corporate, and structured finance. The firm prides itself on inclusion, diversity and belonging. They aim to foster a ‘diverse and inclusive culture where everyone feels a sense of belonging’ and Ashurst’s goal is to be the most progressive global law firm.

Law Training Contract: Firm Specialisms & Training Contract Seats

You will thoroughly plan your four seats of six months each at the outset, with the people who will be responsible for you throughout. Your plan will be reviewed regularly throughout your training. Each seat starts with a handover and technical training. One seat will be in finance, funds and restructuring practice, and one in corporate practice, and one other will aim to develop your contentious experience. You will also be able to take a six month international or client secondment. 

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Law Training Contract: Past Interview Format & Questions

Ashurst has two stages to its interview process. There is an interview with a member of the HR team and an associate, and a separate case study and partner interview. This is alongside a tour of the offices.

The written task typically involves a commercial scenario in which you need to advise another party. A previous trainee explains that their task involved advising a business owner who was seeking investment from angel investors. Others describe this as being ‘60 minutes to write a business report.’ Another example from previous students is a lady who had started a healthy food business and now wants to expand it further throughout the next few years. You therefore need to advise her and choose between various strategies that might be appropriate for her.

Partner Interview

Questions in the partner interview appear to stem largely from the written case and be very commercial in focus. Examples include:

• What is the business’ USP?

  • What are the threats?
    • Who are the competitors?
    • What are the opportunities present for this business owner?
    • Describe the way UK consumer tastes are changing?
    • What are some of the current UK business industry trends?
    • What are some of the food industry trends in the UK?

    More general questions asked include:
    • Why law?
    • Why commercial law?
    • Why Ashurst?
    • How is Ashurst different from other firms that you have applied to?
    • Which other firms have you applied to?
    • What are some of our biggest competitors?
    • When was a time where you had a technical legal issue and how did you resolve it?
    • What qualities should lawyers have?
    • What do mergers and acquisitions mean to you?

    Graduate Recruitment Interview

    • What is the best team that you have worked in?
    • Why are good teams important?
    • Describe a team that you were in that was not performing well together, how did you fix it?
    • When have you had a setback? How did you overcome this setback?
    • When did you take constructive criticism?
    • What are the challenges currently facing the legal industry?
    • Why law at university?
    • What challenges do you expect to face as a trainee here at Ashurst?
    • How do you expect the wider business world to change in the coming years?

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