Reed Smith is a dynamic international law firm dedicated to helping clients move their businesses forward. With an inclusive culture and innovative mind set, we deliver smarter, more creative legal services that drive better outcomes for our clients. Our deep industry knowledge, long-standing relationships and collaborative structure make us the go-to partner for complex disputes, transactions, and regulatory matters. Now celebrating more than 140 years of service, our firm spans 30 offices with 3,000 people, including 1,700 lawyers.

A global platform

30 offices

4 global regions

3,000 people with 1,700 + lawyers


Graduate Recruitment Website: https://www.reedsmith.com/en/careers/regions/uk-graduates

Twitter: https://twitter.com/reedsmithllp

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/user/ReedSmithLLP

Instagram: @reedsmithgrads

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/reed-smith-llp

Training at Reed Smith:

Ambitious and entrepreneurial graduates are rewarded at Reed Smith with a training programme that is supportive, challenging and exciting, offering unparalleled client and international secondments. Our unique culture, which allows trainees to turn passions into careers, is one of the reasons our lawyers remain with us for such a long time, moving seats, jobs roles and even countries, but sticking with the firm.

We are a global law firm with more than 1,700 lawyers in offices throughout Europe, the Middle East, Asia and the United States. Unusually, we operate as one global partnership, rather than separate country-specific partnerships, which is why we’re so good at collaborating across borders to support our clients. As a leading advisor to industries including financial services, energy and natural resources, entertainment and media, real estate and shipping, our lawyers work with some of the most innovative organisations in the world – from multi-billion dollar Silicon Valley giants to national banks. We have even represented some of the biggest pop stars on the planet.

The Professional SQE:

A unique place to grow – We offer stimulating work in an informative, challenging, and busy environment. Your contribution counts from the year before you join, with what is currently our unique LLM Commercial Legal Practice course, moving to the Professional SQE from 2022, through to the end of your qualifying work experience. With four seats over two years, you choose the practice or industry group areas you would like to experience, and you can benefit from a client or international secondment.

What this will look like…

After graduation you will study for the SQE 1 examination remotely from wherever you are in the world. The following 9 months you will work part time at Reed Smith for 2 days per week, spending 3 days a week studying to complete SQE 2 and the Advanced Knowledge & Skills that are vital to your success as a trainee. This concurrent studying and working will allow you to complete an applied Masters-level Professional Project related to the work you are doing, and have the opportunity to gain a solid foundation in business skills and the elements of an innovative and “O Shaped” lawyer.

During your time working with us, you’ll likely rotate through two roles in different business services teams at the firm, one of which may be client-facing. You will also have the advantage of being fully inducted at Reed Smith, building an understanding of our systems, business processes and a network of contacts throughout the firm before starting your Qualified Work Experience (QWE). You’ll be fully confident in talking to senior leaders, how to work with and influence your colleagues, and how to navigate the law firm environment. This experience will enable you to truly hit the ground running unlike any trainee has done before – starting your QWE as an experienced member of the Reed Smith team.

Why Reed Smith?

We’ve been at the forefront of legal educational change since we launched our Masters in Law and Business in 2012 which many other law firms subsequently emulated; and this Professional SQE is the evolution of that offering. We thrive on creating innovative and inventive ways to ensure our trainees and our future lawyers are at the cutting edge of legal developments. Our Professional SQE brings together elements of the O Shaped lawyer offering and vocational professional training; ensuring our trainees gain an integrated and commercial understanding of working in a law firm so that they are equipped to succeed in the adapting legal services environment, while also meeting the SQE requirements as set out by the Solicitors Regulation Authority.

Salary & Benefits:

First-year trainee salary is £45,000, second-year salary £49,000. Our Trainee salaries are always being reviewed and will be updated in line with the external market.

Graduate Opportunities

Job Title Vacation Scheme
Deadline October 1st – December 17th
Salary Weekly salary of £379.75
Link to apply https://www.reedsmith.com/en/careers/regions/uk-graduates
Location London, UK
Job Description



Our spring and summer vacation schemes offer students the opportunity to gain a strong insight into life at Reed Smith, as well as providing a solid account of the type of work encountered as a trainee.

Your seat: you will have the opportunity to experience an area of your choice. Whether you choose the spring or summer scheme, you’ll have an experienced supervisor, and be integrated into a team and assigned to live projects. You’ll also have a trainee buddy who will act as an informal guide – you can catch up with them at any point, and ask any questions.

Assessment and sessions: alongside your seats, you will have the opportunity to attend various sessions to improve your legal and business skills. These include a pro bono exercise and a variety of workshops, covering topics such as cultural intelligence, presentation skills, and business development. These sessions, alongside feedback from your seats, will allow the Graduate Recruitment Team and other people from across the business to assess your suitability for becoming a Reed Smith Trainee.

Getting to know us: throughout the vacation scheme, you will get to experience the real culture of our firm through informal, relaxed socials alongside our trainees. This will give you a chance to really gain a deeper insight into each person’s path to Reed Smith, allowing you to get to know fellow team members and begin to network and build your own profile.


Please note that there is one application this year and you will be able to express your preference for spring or summer during the application process.

Open Day Opportunities:

Event dates and topics:

  • 9 November 2021, 17:00-18:00- Who are Reed Smith
  • 11 November 2021, 17:00-18:30 – A Day in the life of Reed Smith’s Trainees, Associates & Partners (Panel Session)
  • 16 November 2021, 17:00-18:30 – Diversity, Inclusion & Mental Health at Reed Smith
  • 18 November 2021, 17:00-18:00 – Reed Smith Applications and the SQE

Please click here to apply.

Graduate Recruitment Brochure:

For more information Reed Smith and life at the firm, please take a look at our graduate brochure.