Interview experiences for vacation schemes and training contracts. Law firms are sorted alphabetically.

Baker McKenzie Interview

When was your Baker Mckenzie interview? 

2016

What was it for? 

Vacation Scheme

Please describe the interview process at Baker McKenzie.

So the day consists of three exercises. The first is a group exercise which you will complete with three other candidates. Ironically my trains were delayed and I turned up soaking to this, five minutes late. However I had the belief that it couldn’t get any worse which I think helped in my favour. As part of the task you had to recommend a few suggestions regarding this business expansion that was taking place. Across the table you had a few key bits of information about the business that would impact on the advice you give so its important to just consider these all in turn and then make suitable recommendations.

What advice would you give to future applicants for the Baker McKenzie interview?

I was able to stand out quite easily because this exercise is timed and at the end one of my group members decided to go above and beyond what was requested instead of just providing the information the suggestion you had for the business.

I suggested we just finish slightly early instead of wasting our time so I think that went down well with Grad rec (who will supervise this task) so I think it best to not act like a sheep. You then have an interview with a senior associate – very basic competency so not much more to say on that.

The partner interview – you are given a case study before hand which you need to examine and write down some key bits of information. they will have some classic signs of what they want to discuss – foreign jurisdiction elements, market shares/competition issues, employees they want to keep.

There is your standard case study which you present your findings back to the partners and then the expand on your points e.g. why is this a particular issue for this client or what other departments might be able to help with this. Have to say was one of my easier interviews – got nearly all the case study points straight away so not hard to spot.

When was your Baker McKenzie interview? 

March 2018

What for? 

Vacation scheme

Please describe the interview process at Baker McKenzie.

The assessment day started with a group exercise. We introduced ourselves to one another. We were then split into small groups, each assigned with a task to present in front of everyone in the room. We were given a small whiteboard to write on. Then, I was given case study to read and later discuss with the interviewer.

Because I am studying law, I was assigned a case study that was more legal. Candidates with a non-law background were given different case studies. The case was on an airline company. The interviewer asked questions, but it felt more like a discussion rather than an interview in the sense that I was given time to answer but at the same time the interviewer would add on what I said and ask questions for specific statements that I made. This was with a partner. The interview with the associate felt a little more formal, as they were expecting specific answers to their questions.

What advice would you give to future applicants about the Baker McKenzie interview?

It depends on what background one has, given that the case studies differ depending on whether you are a law or non-law candidate. However, all candidates should read a lot of news relating to corporate finance. It is important to also read the news posted on each firm’s website. They have specific news articles relating to that firm. This gives you an idea of how the firm operates. This will in turn help you during your interview with both the partner and associate. The more you read, the more examples you can bring forth during the interviews, which adds depth to your answers and shows your capacity and understanding of commercial law. For me, the group exercise was easy, given that I find it easy to get along with others and just roll with the flow. It is important to listen to others and be polite. Never interrupt. The challenging part was to read the case study, which I was given 20 minutes for, and think about what could potentially be emphasised on during the interview.

I think I would have been able to perform better during the interviews had I read more before. A broad understanding of corporare law allows for an easier assessment of a case study. You will much quicker understand what the general theme is and what potential challenges there may be for the fictional client. Candidates can expect the interviews to be relaxed. It is more a discussion than a strict interview. If you have knowledge and a genuine interest in the subject, it will shine through during these interviews.