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Flexible working for lawyers: who’s doing what?

Written by: Richard Simmons
Published on: 25 Aug 2016

Today, Macfarlanes has become the latest firm to introduced a flexible working policy.

The City firm is allowing lawyers in its corporate, litigation, private client and tax teams to work from home for one day per fortnight. The initiative will be rolled out across the firm from August.

It’s just the latest in a growing cohort of law firms to increase formal agile working policies in the last 12 months. Here’s a run-down of the firms that are have schemes in place or are thinking about implementing them.

Agile and flexible working: who’s doing what?

Berwin Leighton Paisner: Agile working policies that currently vary by office.

BLM: Has introduced flexible working for staff in its London office

Clifford Chance: London managing partner David Bickerton is encouraging partners to work from home when possible.

DAC Beachcroft: Has made Leeds an ‘agile office’ where all lawyers hot-desk.

Dentons: UK partners, associates and legal executives are permitted to work from home one day a week on an informal basis.

DWF: Has various agile working policies.

Foot Anstey: Piloting a ‘warm-desking’ policy for 12 months.

Herbert Smith Freehills: Lawyers can work from home one day a week.

Macfarlanes: All lawyers will be able work from home for one day per fortnight from August 2016.

Mayer Brown: Piloting agile working in its construction department, with management to report on the results of the trial to the partnership in July.

Mishcon de Reya: Managing partner Kevin Gold has told his lawyers they can work as many or as few days as they want.

Nabarro: Fee earners can work from home one day a week.

Olswang: Will offer agile working to all staff by 2017.

Schillings: Offering voluntary agile working to lawyers and staff (with the exception of paralegals, legal secretaries and client services staff) and suggests employees should come in two days per week

Shearman & Sterling: Has informal policy but reviewing its thinking on agile working for London lawyers after it introduced a policy to allow its US-based associates to work from home two days a month.

Slaughter and May: Trialling flexible working scheme this week that allows associates and partners to work from home one day per fortnight.

Wedlake Bell: ‘Experimenting’ with agile working.

White & Case: Agile working policy encourages staff to work remotely on an ad hoc basis, while a flexible working programme allows staff to have regular arrangements to work from home.