Step 1: The application form
The first step in the process is an online application form. Your chance to tell us about yourself, and why you’d like to join Osborne Clarke.
The questions have been designed to give you the opportunity to really demonstrate not only your commercial understanding, but also showcase your skills and give us some insight into your motivations. We’ll be looking out for signs that you have all the qualities that make a great Osborne Clarke lawyer, so think about how you can evidence things like the ability to listen, learn and collaborate; a passion for client service; a genuine interest in the business environment; a problem-solving approach; and – of course - the drive and motivation to succeed.
You’ll be asked about your work experience – and this doesn’t only mean legal work experience. You will have developed different personal skills and attributes no matter the job or sector you’ve worked in, and we’re interested in how you think you would apply these to becoming a successful lawyer.
We’ll ask about your academic achievements, and strongly encourage you to opt into completing the Rare Contextual System to allow added appreciation of the context in which these have been gained. You can read more about CRS here
. There’s also space for you to explain any mitigating circumstances you’ve experienced, so please do share anything you feel to be important.
Completing a successful application will take time and a lot of research so give yourself enough space and don’t rush it.
Our tips for submitting a strong application.
Think about the bigger picture:
What makes you a great candidate, and how you might make that come across in your application form? Look beyond academia and work experience and make sure that you include information about your interests and hobbies – these are what make you an individual and will help you to stand out from the crowd. We want to get to know the person behind the application form.
We want to know what it is about Osborne Clarke that has encouraged you to apply, so do your research and use it to tailor your answers and bring your application to life.
Get the basics right:
It sounds simple, but make sure that you complete all sections of the form. And use continuous prose throughout to show your writing style, tone, and fluency
Keep it short and avoid cliché:
Be succinct and use short sentences to ensure that your points are clear. Use straightforward language and avoid using buzzwords over used phrases such as ‘relish the opportunity’
Check, check again:
Attention to detail is key, so remember to double (or even triple) check your application before you submit it. And even better, get a fresh pair of eyes in the form of a friend or family member to read through your submission - they’re much more likely to spot any small mistakes.
Stage 2: Verbal reasoning test
Once your application form is in, you’ll be invited to complete an online verbal reasoning test. This aptitude test assesses your ability to understand written information and evaluate arguments based on this - a vital skill for lawyers to possess.
The test is provided by SHL, and you can find more information and try out some practice tests here
Stage 3: Virtual assessment centre
If you’ve applied for a vacation scheme or training contract and been invited to attend one of our assessment centres – congratulations! You’re through to the next round.
This half-day session runs virtually and involves a commercial exercise and a Watson Glaser test (an aptitude test which assesses your critical thinking ability). These exercises allow us to find out more about your communication skills, commercial understanding and problem solving ability.
You can prepare for the Watson Glaser test by trying a practice test here
Stage 4: In-person assessment centre
The day consists of a few different elements including a group discussion and a partner interview. There’s also a lot of opportunity to network with current trainees and hear their experiences. All of this in combination will allow us to find out more about you, giving us insight on your commercial awareness and understanding, communication skills, ability to work in a team and your understanding of Osborne Clarke.
The more prepared you are, the calmer you’ll be – and the more you’ll enjoy and get something out of the day. So, we suggest reviewing your application submission and getting up to date on recent developments in the news. That said, try to avoid being ‘over-prepared’ – we also want you to show your ability to think on your feet.
Don’t forget to enjoy yourself
The assessment day provides an excellent opportunity to network, ask questions and get to know Osborne Clarke and your potential colleagues. Bring your curiosity, stay open-minded and remember to enjoy it too.