Wherever you look, there are women filling legal roles that had previously appeared closed to them in Scotland: Lorna Jack has been chief executive of the Law Society since 2009; Lady Dorrian has been Lord Justice Clerk – the country’s second-most senior judge – since 2016; and Angela Grahame QC has been vice-dean of the Faculty of Advocates for three years, the second woman to hold the role but the first to have been competitively elected to it.
At the same time, practically all the big independent firms are now either led or co-led by a woman, many for the first time in their history. At Brodies, chair Christine O’Neill works alongside managing partner Nick Scott; Burness Paull is co-led by managing partner Tamar Tammes and chair Peter Lawson; while Morton Fraser chair Maggie Moodie manages the firm along with chief executive Chris Harte. Continue reading “Scotland: Art of the possible”
The second season of gender pay gap reporting has again laid bare the stark disparities between men and women throughout the legal sector. However, with only two rounds of reporting to look at so far, the trajectory of pay equality in legal is still difficult to ascertain. Instead, conversations have turned to the value of reporting gender pay in of itself, particularly given the lack of common methodology in gauging the numbers.
These concerns are not new to the latest reporting round. In March 2018 Pinsent Masons senior partner Richard Foley (pictured) criticised the current regime’s lack of consistency in reporting benchmarks. The Law Society later in November 2018 called for uniformity in gender reporting, publishing guidelines on how firms could provide more clarity on the issue. Recommendations included firms distinguishing between equity and non-equity partners, publishing a full-time equivalent (FTE) compensation gap based on the full financial year and reporting on partner bonus schemes. Continue reading “Mind the gap(s) – more of the same old inequality and fudged statistics prevalent in Big Law”
A group of 65 general counsel (GCs) spanning major companies from the UK and Europe has collectively signed a letter urging law firms to improve their diversity efforts.
Among those to have lent their support to the statement are Shell GC Donny Ching, Vodafone group GC Rosemary Martin (pictured), Unilever’s chief legal officer Ritva Sotamaa, Anglo American group GC Richard Price and BHP Billiton group GC Caroline Cox. Continue reading “In-house leaders sign letter urging law firms to ramp up diversity efforts”
In a landmark for the legal industry that nevertheless raises some uncomfortable truths, the number of working female solicitors in England and Wales has exceeded men for the first time according to new figures.
Reflecting the decades-long influx of junior women to the profession, the total number of women lawyers in the world’s second largest legal market is now 50.1% of the UK’s 139,624 practising certificate (PC) holders, and 48% of the 93,155 solicitors in private practice. Continue reading “The future is female – women lawyers outnumber men in UK as the in-house boom continues”
Marco Cillario assesses the latest rounds at London’s big five
The overall number of partner promotions at Magic Circle firms has dropped 10% this year to 89 after nearing 100 in 2017. Continue reading “Magic Circle partner promotions: numbers fall but gender diversity improves”
Alex Novarese, Legal Business: How is the market generally?
Lee Ranson, Eversheds Sutherland: Most of the managing partners around this table will say it was a better 2017 than expected. We had some of our highest numbers against a budget where we were very, very wary with Brexit and uncertainty. Very strange. We are going into a new budget now and management is more cautious than the practitioners. Continue reading “An ill wind… The LB100 leadership debate”
A fuller picture of the legal industry’s gender pay gap issue is emerging as Addleshaw Goddard, Mishcon de Reya and Gowling WLG become the latest firms to reveal big earnings disparities.
Gender pay brackets at Addleshaw – published Tuesday (13 March) ahead of the 4 April deadline required by legislation brought in last year – reveal the firm paid its male staff on average 43.2% more in bonuses than women for the year to 5 April 2017. The median bonus figure was 33.3%. Continue reading “Gender diversity: pay gaps revealed at Addleshaw Goddard, Mishcon de Reya and Gowling WLG”
Allen & Overy has become the latest magic circle firm to reveal the sizeable gulf between male and female employee earnings.
The firm on Monday (12 March) published its figures for gender pay brackets ahead of the 4 April deadline required by legislation brought in last year. Continue reading “Gender diversity: Allen & Overy faring better than rivals as it reveals 20% pay gap”
In a blow for traditionalists, our latest cover feature eschews profiling a group of hard-working, smart, highly-confident men who are talented lawyers to instead profile a group of hard-working, smart, variably-confident women who are talented lawyers. Radical stuff.
But then the career cycle for too many ambitious female deal lawyers remains nasty, brutish and short. While women increasingly advance into senior roles in advisory practice areas and even more so among the ranks of senior general counsel, in the upper reaches of transactional law, it is still a boys’ club and anyone claiming differently does not know many corporate lawyers. Continue reading “Comment: Law firms will never just hand status to City women – they’ll have to take it”
‘You will have to go out and find the women – they won’t come to you,’ warns Travers Smith partner Lucie Cawood when Legal Business began researching this cover feature. That proved an astute prediction.
Searching for senior female talent in the City, amid weeks spent amassing nearly 60 interviews with partners, law firm leaders, corporate heads and recruiters, it becomes clear that it takes more work to get women deal lawyers talking than their male equivalents. A lot more. Continue reading “Alphas – the hunt for female deal stars (and why it’s hard to be a City woman)”