Silver Circle firm's agile work policy one-ups competition

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Travers Smith is going agile – and it’s one-upping rivals in the process.

The Silver Circle firm has introduced agile working to its workforce, making the initiative available to all lawyers and staff, including trainees. What’s more, the firm has not formulated a policy or convened a group from whom a formal sign-off must be obtained.

In short, the firm is telling its employees that if their role and the needs of the business permits, they can work whenever and wherever they deem most appropriate, even without formal notice to their managers.

“It will be up to each individual to determine whether they are best served by working in the office or elsewhere,” the firm said.

The firm says that “client service and personal development will remain paramount at all times.” Nonetheless, the initiative is still more open than other programs implemented by rivals, which have formal approvals before flexible working arrangements are undertaken.

“One of the key issues facing our people is maintaining an appropriate work/life balance, while effectively responding to clients' expectations,” said David Patient, Travers Smith’s managing partner.

“We are fully aware that new technologies and the demands of working across different time zones in today's global market are transforming the modern workplace. It is therefore important to us to remain competitive and support the needs of our people and clients, and to continue to be able to attract and retain the greatest diversity of talent,” he added.

The firm hopes that as their people have more control and autonomy over when and where they work, their firm’s responsiveness and effectiveness will also increase.

Last month, US giant Reed Smith launched a new agile work program for its entire London office, allowing staff to work outside of the office and outside normal work hours for as long as they like.

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