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Application Process

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For everything you need to know about our application process, read our step-by-step guide.

What are we looking for?

We require bright, flexible and open minded individuals, who are excited to have exposure to practice areas in both commercial services and insurance services. In terms of academics, we have adopted a contextual assessment and look for good A-levels/Scottish Highers (or equivalent qualifications), and a 2.1 at undergraduate degree level in any discipline (either expected or obtained).

We are proud to be using Rare Recruitment's Contextual Recruitment System (CRS), which allows us to consider your academic achievements in the context in which you gained them. We understand that not every candidate's achievements look the same on paper and we want to recruit the best people, from all backgrounds. 

See below for a step-by-step guide to our application process and test your knowledge with our interactive strengths-based interview quiz. Please note that for direct training contracts, the recruitment process is the same aside from attending a vacation scheme.

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Stage 1: Online Application Form

Our application form asks for a breakdown of your academic achievements to date, any work experience (both legal and non-legal), and a 750 word personal statement split into two questions. The personal statement makes up the bulk of the application form. When preparing a response for the two questions, you should make sure that you are clearly outlining your knowledge of DWF, what you think makes DWF different and also what transferrable skills you have gained which are relevant for the role of a trainee solicitor.  

Advice: With the 750 word count, you must decide which information markets you, your abilities and why you are a good candidate in the most relevant way. You might have to leave some information out, but you will have the chance to showcase these at latter stages of the recruitment process. 


For more top tips on how to market yourself, please visit our trainee blog post here

Stage 2: Video Interview

Should you be successful at application stage then you will be invited to complete a video interview. The video interview should take around twenty minutes to complete, and you will be asked a series of timed questions (a mixture of strengths-based and competency-based questions). But don’t worry, there is a practice question!

Advice: When recording a video interview, always try and link back to the question, the role of a trainee solicitor or why your answer is relevant for DWF. 


Read our helpful blog post on video interviews

Stage 3: Assessment Centre

If you are successful at video interview stage, then you will be invited to an assessment centre, which is a fantastic opportunity to get a feel for DWF. The day consists of a group exercise, a strengths-based interview and an exercise that will assess your attention to detail. There will also be an opportunity to network informally with the assessors. 

Advice: This is your opportunity to show the assessors what you understand about DWF and our unique business model. Make sure that you understand this before joining us at the assessment day.


Read our blog post on what to expect at a DWF assessment centre

Stage 4: Vacation Scheme

Should you be successful post assessment centre, you will be invited to attend a two week vacation scheme at one of our offices. 

Advice: Consider keeping a journal or a record of what you have learnt at the end of each day. This will help you at the end of the scheme when you are looking back and reflecting on your experience, and will also help with any preparation for the final stage assessment.   


Please click here for further information on our vacation scheme

Stage 5: Meet the Leaders

The final stage of the recruitment process is a networking morning where you will meet with members of our senior leadership team, which may include practice group partners, location heads, leaders within Connected Services and our operational directors.

Here we are looking to assess your ability to work in a team, how you might respond in a client-facing scenario and finally your knowledge of DWF.

Advice: Before this stage, you should reflect on the knowledge of DWF that you have built up over the recruitment process and plan some questions for the assessors that reflect the knowledge and expertise that you have built up. This will help to demonstrate that you understand our business and that you are excited at the prospect of joining us. 

Applications for our Early Career opportunities are now open
Get in touch
Contact our team if you have any enquiries.

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