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The Freshfields Returners program is open to practicing lawyers who have been out of the profession for a period of more than two years.

You will benefit from employment at a global law firm with world class heritage, cutting edge innovation, phenomenal colleagues, a collaborative culture, and a clearly articulated set of values.

You will be part of our Silicon Valley team, which has established itself as a leader in solving clients’ most complex challenges and gain the opportunity to work with high-profile clients and collaborate with cross-border, cross-functional teams. We foster an inclusive environment where you can achieve your potential and offer dedicated training that includes: access to Freshfields’ mentorship programs; practice area and other legal training; and the opportunity to work alongside and gain support from other returning professionals who understand the challenges of career re-entry.

What to expect from the Returners program

You will have an initial conversation with one of our HR professionals to discuss the opportunity, receive interview coaching and ask any questions relating to the program and interview process

Your interview will be either face-to-face or via video call. We can be flexible to suit your needs and each step of the process will be clearly explained

Following acceptance of an offer, you will have a pre-joining call with your manager and assigned mentor, where you can ask questions about the role, the office, or the firm

During your first week, you will have dedicated time with the key people who will support you throughout the program including your manager and your mentor. You will also attend our standard office induction which will be a mix of online digital content and virtual / face to face sessions

With our support, you will create a bespoke training and development plan based on your individual circumstances - an example training plan is included below





Returners program: example training plan

Induction back into the work place

Weeks 1-4

  • Office induction – Office tour and meet-and-greet with key people, plus virtual sessions to welcome you to the firm and explain our benefits offerings and wellbeing resources
  • Systems training induction – Various modules to help familiarize you with the firm’s systems and tools, from Outlook and Teams to client matter and finance systems
  • Mentor meetings – Weekly meetings with your mentor, providing an opportunity to ask questions, share experiences and exchange feedback

Technical training

Months 1-6

  • Review of technical training needs with manager and agree on a bespoke training plan
  • Access to Legal Training zone, updated regularly with legal training (by practice group), including programs for CLE credit

Soft skills

Months 3-6

  • Skills development - Range of virtual / classroom courses to refresh or enhance your skills, including social styles; giving/receiving feedback; effective communication; presentation skills

Ongoing development

  • 3 and 6 month reviews to assess and agree on further technical and skills training needs
  • Annual performance and development review