Freshfields will keep 84% of its group of 37 trainees – 31 offers were made to the cohort with all agreeing to stay on as newly-qualified (NQ) lawyers. The rate is up slightly on last year’s spring retention figure of 82% when the firm again kept on 31 trainees out of a group of 38. The firm offered 33 of 38, or 87%, of its trainees places.
Also posting its trainee retention figures this month is A&O which posted a spring retention rate of 82%, compared to a rate of 91% this time last year. The Magic Circle firm held on to 31 applicants after 32 of the group of 36 received offers from a cohort of 38.
The results follow Slaughter and May’s 100% retention of its trainees, keeping all 25 due to qualify in March. Slaughter and May, Freshfields and A&O have outshined Clifford Chance (CC) which has kept on just 31 of its 46 trainees or 67% of its cohort. CC had 43 out of 46 apply for a contract, it made 33 offers and retained 31. Comparatively, CC retained 91% of its trainees in spring 2015, and 80% in spring 2016.
Meanwhile, Simmons & Simmons claims an 80% retention rate, offering 12 trainees in its spring cohort an NQ role. The firm said 14 out of 15 applied for a position, 12 offers were made and accepted.
This time last year, the firm announced nine trainees had gone through the qualification round while it later emerged there were actually 13 trainees on the intake, which gave Simmons a lower intake rate of 54%, rather than that declared of 78%.