Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer Reviews | Glassdoor.co.uk

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Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer Reviews

Updated 20 April 2018
133 reviews

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3.2
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Christopher Pugh and Stephan Eilers
19 Ratings

133 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Great people, interesting work and nice office space (in 11 reviews)

  • Very good working conditions, decent salary and good benefits options (in 6 reviews)

Cons
  • Poor work/life balance even for business services (in 11 reviews)

  • Long hours - but this applies to any similar law firm (in 17 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Global IAG - amazing!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in London, England
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in London, England
    Recommends

    I worked at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer full-time

    Pros

    Everything was really positive at Freshfields.

    Cons

    I had no major complaints.


  2. Helpful (2)

    "Business services struggling"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in London, England
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in London, England
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Company name on the CV, salary, benefits, gym, annual staff parties

    Cons

    Terrible IT technology, appalling HR support, no change management, very low transparency and employee engagement, too many management layers and departmental segregation, no value appraisal process and lip service to the firm's values - bends depending on the client. Business services hit by redundancies (especially PAs) with the idea to reduce costs but it is backfiring with chaos.

    Advice to Management

    Invest in technology, get competent people and address low staff morale by proper engagement and incentives.

  3. Helpful (1)

    "The sleeping giant of the city"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer full-time

    Pros

    Nice people, good team spirt

    Cons

    A bit behind the times on the technology front


  4. Helpful (1)

    "Amazing benefits"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - IT, London in London, England
    Former Employee - IT, London in London, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Great benefits package, global firm, top tier services provider

    Cons

    Hard to change direction, long hours

    Advice to Management

    Think more strategically than 1 year out


  5. Helpful (1)

    "Average"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Legal PA
    Current Employee - Legal PA

    I have been working at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Work with a great team

    Cons

    no flexible working and hands are tied by management with regards to decisions


  6. Helpful (5)

    "Great perks, but that's about it"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Fantastic free Nuffield health gym, access to in house Smile Hub dentist, doctors, restaurant and plenty of after work social events

    Cons

    Terrible line management, you are a drone and there is no such thing as career progression at all. You can't apply for another job unless you've been there for over 12 months. High expectations that are not verbalised but you are expected to match. Long tedious processes to do simple tasks. Very old fashioned. Huge lack of diversity, high amount of oxbridge educated white men. Lip service paid to diversity.


  7. Helpful (3)

    "Interesting work and some nice & normal people; very traditional and not always meritocratic"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in London, England
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in London, England
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer full-time

    Pros

    I worked in one of the smaller teams and made great friends there, as well as having approachable partners who constantly sought honest feedback for themselves. The work was interesting and challenging, the deals were often headline (business) news, and if you prove yourself you can take on a lot of responsibility quite early on. The pay is good - although you could earn more for similar hours at a US law firm, and the culture was becoming more "US" when I left (target hours, bonus percentages etc). Good support services. despite quite a lot being moved up to Manchester. The experience you gain and the reputation of the firm means you are well placed to seek an in-house job later in your career if that is the route you wish to travel.

    Cons

    The hours can be long but that is to be expected, so ought not to be a surprise, and you are paid accordingly. There is a hierarchical feel throughout the firm, and promotional decisions were as much political as they were meritocratic. The firm has initiatives aimed at "diversity", including womens' groups and leadership courses. However, behaviour I witnessed in practice and information I gleaned from colleagues with children suggested that the goals were not being achieved.

    Advice to Management

    Like breeds like! If you want to really achieve diverse leadership (inc. in terms of race, gender, socio-economic background, sexual orientation), the current partnership needs to stop promoting in its own image. Also, internal news / developments often appeared on e.g. Roll on Friday before staff were told; this sometimes led to a culture of feeling patronised/untrusted and frustration.

  8. Helpful (2)

    "Associate"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Former Employee - Associate in London, England
    Former Employee - Associate in London, England
    Doesn't Recommend

    I worked at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    - Some interesting clients and transactions

    Cons

    - Very long and unpredictable working hours with little to no upper-level support and holidays regularly cancelled
    - A number of partners (particularly from the older generation) were known to be extremely misogynistic, with a boys' club culture and heavy drinking/visits to strip clubs with clients not uncommon (although technically not officially encouraged). - HR had a policy of covering up sexual harassment by certain senior partners and associates, which, based on the accounts of a number of women I worked with, had created a particularly toxic environment for junior associates within certain practice groups.
    .


  9. Helpful (7)

    "North/South Divide"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Manchester, England
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Manchester, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Good salary and benefits. Invests in training of staff.

    Cons

    A lot of tick box exercises especially concerning continuous improvement.

    Advice to Management

    Treat all staff the same (regardless of location). You cannot promote a one team ethos and then give London staff a bottle of champagne and 22 December off as an extra day's leave. Manchester staff get no champagne and have to work on 22 December! Absolutely outrageous treatment of staff in the north that are earning a lot less than the London staff.


  10. "private equity"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Derivatives Negotiator in London, England
    Former Employee - Derivatives Negotiator in London, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    just amazing deals team work spirit culture

    Cons

    no cons at all the place was amazing

    Advice to Management

    keep going


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