Life at Sharpe Pritchard
A modern law firm reflecting modern lives. Whatever life looks like right now, we will support you to work in the way that you need to, ensuring that we have the best legal minds and talent for our clients
What can you expect as a valued Sharpe Pritchard colleague?
In addition to working for a national firm that is at the forefront of public law, you will experience a friendly and collegiate team atmosphere where agile working across core teams is encouraged.
Flexible working is not a dirty word. We want the very best to join the firm and we want you to stay. We recognise that everyone has different needs and responsibilities at different times in our lives and flexibility can be necessary.
We are committed to ongoing professional development not only with established providers but through our internal “Lunch and Learn” scheme which offer regular legal updates as well as soft skills training.
We believe the best organisations are those that listen to their employees from across the business. There are regular staff briefings to keep staff up to date on key developments within the company, supported by monthly newsletters. More importantly, we want to hear from you. We actively respond to firm-wide engagement surveys. We have an active junior board who meet regularly to help shape how we do business and membership in encouraged from across our teams. We also have an active social and CSR committee who put on social and charity events across the year.
Invest in us and we will invest in you.
It is central to our values that our teams reflect the diverse community around us and that everyone at Sharpe Pritchard can be themselves and bring their authentic selves to work. We know that ensuring diversity and inclusion is not just the right thing to do, it yields a wider range of skills, broader experience and perspectives which in turn leads to more innovation, problem solving, strategic development and higher engagement.
We are proud that the firm has a long history of gender equality at every level in the firm and that we buck the trend within professional services in having achieved gender balance in partnership for a number of years but we want to do even better. Achieving true equality, diversity and inclusion is a core aim at Sharpe Pritchard and we very much welcome applications from all sections of our diverse community, irrespective of race or racial group, sex, sexual orientation, sexual identity, religion or belief, age or disability.
If you would like further information on the reasonable adjustments we have in place as part of our recruitment and interview process, or would like to discuss specific requirements, please do get in touch.
Spreading the word
“I passed my ten year milestone at Sharpe Pritchard in 2019, having joined as a trainee solicitor. I joined the firm because I wanted to join a medium-sized law firm in the City that advises on cutting edge deals, has clear routes for progression and offers a genuine work-life balance.
I really enjoy my work life here. My top three reasons for this are:
- Exciting work that is challenging and at the cutting edge of public and regulated sectors in the UK
- There is no hierarchy here and the firm offers true autonomy and responsibility from an early stage in your career, giving you flexibility in the way that you work
- The nature of the team is quite different from traditional law firms - we have a 50/50 split in the male/female ratio of partners, and you are truly championed on the basis of merit alone
I continue to stay at the firm because when you join Sharpe Pritchard you join a community of like-minded lawyers that are committed to public sector law. I have enjoyed huge success here in a short space of time and cannot wait to see what the next chapter brings.”
Gemma Townley, Partner
“I joined Sharpe Pritchard because I wanted to experience a wide range of legal disciplines, but did not want to be anonymous at a large firm. I wanted to train and work where you are a valued member of the team and can see your work make a real difference, but also where it is understood that members of staff have lives outside of the office. It’s an extremely friendly atmosphere and the working culture, as well as flexible working initiatives, are unbeatable.
Trainees and junior members of staff are also encouraged to engage in a variety of committees (including a Junior Board) which provides the opportunity to be a part of decisions which are ordinarily taken at a much higher level.
My experience as a trainee at the firm was outstanding and this is why I am delighted to stay and qualify into the corporate department. Sharpe Pritchard strikes an impressive balance with their trainees; giving them lots of responsibility in a variety of interesting work while ensuring there is always support at hand. Everyone who works at the firm is extremely approachable and genuinely interested in your professional development and continued learning, which makes it an exceptional place to train as a solicitor.”
Ryan Copeland (Trainee Solicitor 2017-2019) now qualified Associate
"I joined Sharpe Pritchard from a large international firm in the City, and I’ve now been here for about eight months. I’d enjoyed working at my previous firm and gained some great experience, but it had become increasingly clear to me that, now that I have a young family, I didn’t want to be travelling frequently and chasing international work. I’d also started to feel a little anonymous in such a big organisation, and wanted to be part of a firm where I could get to know everybody.
One concern with moving from a big firm to a much smaller one is that the quality of work you do might suffer, but in fact nothing could be further from the truth. With Sharpes we work on many very high profile matters, and I’m involved in several multi-million pound disputes. The work is interesting and challenging, and as many of the clients are public authorities there’s the sense that you’re working for the community.
Its also a very friendly and collaborative place to work. In some firms partners are very protective of the work they’ve won, leading to an “eat what you kill” system and very siloed mentalities. In contrast during my first couple of months here I’d been referred work from colleagues across the firm.
In short, I’d highly recommend working for Sharpes!"
David Owens, Partner
“I've been at Sharpe Pritchard for nearly 13 years, having started here as a trainee solicitor. The main draw for me was (and still is) its public sector focus and I must admit I was very curious to find out what “parliamentary agents” do, so I was very pleased when one of them took the trainees on a tour of the House of Commons to show us just that!
The final clincher for me was my interview with the then Senior Partner, which felt more like a good chat with a friend – an early insight into what it would be like sharing an office with him for part of my litigation seat on my training contract.
As a public procurement and contracts lawyer on the Infrastructure team, I have the privilege to contribute to a variety of major and innovative public sector projects, which keeps my job interesting, and I have also been able to see the positive outcomes of these projects for wider society, which keeps me motivated to do my job well!
I also enjoy being able to bring some of my personal passions, such as those for community engagement, into the workplace, by sitting on our Corporate Social Responsibility committee and connecting with local charities. Why have I stayed at the same firm for 13 years? Quite simply, it’s the people - colleagues whom I enjoy working and sharing life with and senior management who have fully supported me in changes to my role and working patterns to accommodate a flexible arrangement. The fact that my personal priorities are respected and supported by my employer, is a huge factor for why I stay.”
Juli Lau, Legal Director at Sharpe Pritchard
We are always looking to grow our successful public law team. We offer the highest calibre work within a friendly and talented team of specialist solicitors together with structured career progression, competitive salaries and benefits.
We also offer meaningful flexible working arrangements and are very happy to discuss how they might work for you.
You will be a solicitor who provides clear, sensible, client-focussed advice and who has excellent communication skills, inspiring confidence in your clients. You will be able to demonstrate an active interest in marketing and business development.
If you are looking to join a firm where high profile public law is at the heart of what we do, apply with your CV and covering letter to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sharpe Pritchard in numbers
1 with a disability
as defined by the Equalities Act
3 limited a little
38 no limitations
*These results are based on the Workforce Data made to the SRA in 2019, not all staff responded
The firm welcomes applications from all sections of the community irrespective of race or racial group, sex, sexual orientation, religion or belief, age or disability.
Please note that the firm does not accept speculative CVs from recruitment agencies. We have an approved PSL of recruitment agencies that we work with and candidate applications are only accepted via our recruitment applicant tracking system (ATS). New agencies that wish to work with us will need to agree to our standard recruitment agency terms and conditions with the HR Team at email@example.com
Please click here for our recruitment privacy notice.
Training at Sharpe Pritchard
Sharpe Pritchard recruits between three and five trainees every year. We aim to provide legal experience in all core areas of our practice: dispute resolution and judicial review, planning and parliamentary, real estate, construction, ICT and data, infrastructure, commercial contracts and procurement.
Our trainees are often given the opportunity to go on secondment with clients, usually for part of the working week. This gives invaluable exposure to and experience of our client organisations which include national government agencies, police forces, NHS trusts and local authorities.
Applications should be made through the lawcareers.net portal. The application window usually opens in June, closing at the end of July. You should apply two years before the year you wish to start your training contract.
Our starting salary is £34,000. Additionally, we offer 28 days holiday and a grant towards LPC costs (subject to terms and conditions).