As representation of women at senior levels remains an issue across the legal sector, Peerpoint and the Reignite Academy announce a new partnership. Marie Kirby, Head of Talent in the UK, tells us more:
We understand the potential of those who have trained and worked as lawyers and who are now keen to return to work. There is so much talent out there and by working with Reignite, we’re hoping to help more returners find opportunities that match their ambitions and in particular afford them the level of flexibility, career progression and professional and personal development that they perhaps can’t achieve elsewhere.
“We’re thrilled to be working with Peerpoint” says Lisa Unwin, CEO of the Reignite Academy, a unique organisation that helps returning lawyers explore opportunities, secure the right job; and provide coaching and support as they transition into new roles. “We come across so many women (and men) who are very keen to return but who say private practice just isn’t for them and who are perfectly happy to take a more flexible, contract role. We’re hoping that this venture will open up many more opportunities.”
Henrietta is a great example of the potential that this partnership has, in some ways she’s a pioneer for it. Having trained and qualified as a commercial litigator, she spent four years in-house at Sotheby’s before taking a twelve year career break to care for her children. With more time on her hands, she went to work in the local office of a national law firm but, four years in, found herself itching to return to her city career.
Henrietta heard about the Reignite Academy returnship programme, applied and quickly secured a position in the Commercial Litigation team at top international law firm. Asked about her experience she says:
“I was somewhat daunted at the prospect of returning to the city but the support and advice provided by the Reignite Academy was excellent. The work was varied and interesting and helped me to get up to speed with how ways of working had changed since I last worked in the city, such as E-discovery, for example.”
When her six month returnship contract ended, Henrietta took the summer off to be with her family and to reflect on next steps. With her confidence rebuilt, she decided that continuing to work on a contract basis would be the best way to accommodate her professional and personal ambitions. In September 2019, she saw an advert for a Litigation contract role with Peerpoint.
“I was attracted by the excellent work and the flexibility offered” she explains. “I had a number of initial interviews with Peerpoint, then a timed online legal knowledge test, before an interview with two A&O partners. It was refreshing to be able to state that I was hoping to find interesting work whilst also being able to take time off over the summer to be with my children. The partners were perfectly happy with this.”
After an initial role working as a consultant on an A&O client project, Henrietta took another break before then moving onto a nine month role working on contract in the Litigation and Contentious Regulatory Department of a city bank. She is excited to find her legal career very much back on track.
The aim of this new venture is to open up many more opportunities for people like Henrietta and ensure that anyone looking to return to law can fulfil their potential.
Find out more
For more information, contact Marie Kirby in the U.K.
Learn more about the Reignite Academy here.