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April 24

How Flex helped Northern law grads land a role at Leigh Day

Case Studies

Lizzie Grayson

Lizzie Grayson

Two Leigh Day Paralegals - Eddy and Derin

In November 2022, Flex Legal embarked on a groundbreaking partnership with top-100 law firm, Leigh Day. Looking to expand their paralegal litigation teams in Manchester and Leeds, this project sparked a journey that led to a huge, large-scale paralegal recruitment drive.

We recently caught up with Eddy and Derin, two Flex paralegals who have both worked at Leigh Day, to delve into their experiences and gain an insight into how this collaboration has helped them on their legal journeys.

Why did Leigh Day want to work with Flex Legal?

Leigh Day initially came to Flex Legal with an incredibly ambitious plan to rapidly scale up their litigation team. This demand emerged when Leigh Day undertook a multi-party action project, investigating several leading vehicle manufacturers who have been accused of fitting 'defeat' devices to their vehicles to cheat the EU and UK emissions laws. This would eventually result in a life-changing opportunity for any Manchester or Leeds-based law graduates looking for the valuable experience they need to get their foot in the legal industry door, with an initial six month placement, followed by the possibility of permanent employment thereafter.

For Eddy, a Malaysian national who had recently completed a Flex placement with top law firm, Freshfields, and Derin, a Nigerian LLM graduate hungry for UK-based legal experience, this role was the perfect opportunity to help progress their legal careers to the next level. Derin said: "Working through Flex Legal has been a really fruitful and beneficial experience. From signing up to the platform to waiting for roles, the process has been fast and transparent, and I received a role a lot quicker than I expected."

I’m very grateful for the opportunity Flex has given me by placing me at both Freshfields and Leigh Day. Without Flex, I could not have worked with such respected law firms.

Eddy Ng, Flex Paralegal

What did the role look like?

With their large class action project looming, Leigh Day were on the lookout for paralegals who could oversee the acquisition of precise information and instructions from clients, and meticulously maintain accurate records. Their responsibilities would extend to supporting document drafting, and client liaison through interviews and instruction-taking. Additionally, they would provide general administrative support, liaise with other solicitors and third parties, and monitor all facets of the cases on behalf of clients. Most importantly, this role not only demanded a keen eye for detail but also a proactive and adaptable approach to meet the diverse needs of the firm and its clients.

Armed with their experience of placing large numbers of paralegals into overstretched legal teams, the Flex Northern team felt confident in their ability to find the perfect pool of candidates for Leigh Day, namely talented Manchester and Leeds-based law graduates with a keen eye for detail and a client-centred approach. For the majority, this would be their first ever legal opportunity, meaning that this was an extraordinary chance for them to break into the legal industry and work with a top-100 law firm.

I am so grateful to Flex for giving me my first corporate experience in a busy legal office. Leigh Day has been an amazing employer and a pleasure to work with.

Derin Agunloye, Flex Paralegal

What did the role entail in practice?

In conversation with Eddy and Derin, they took us through the day-to-day tasks they carried out whilst on the Leigh Day project. 

Unsurprisingly, a significant aspect of the position involved daily communication with a diverse range of clients, seeking insights into their individual claims. Each client presented unique and intricate issues associated with their claims, necessitating a distinct level of emotional empathy and delicacy. This role not only honed their communication skills but also showcased their adaptability, with a requirement to adapt their tone and attitude to meet the varying needs of clients. Primarily, they both gained a deeper understanding of the importance of people skills, particularly when it comes to managing various relationships with clients and supervisors.

Thanks to the support and encouragement from Flex Legal in securing this opportunity, Eddy and Derin now feel much more confident in their practical legal knowledge. These experiences have not only broadened their understanding, but have also paved the way for them to move forward in their legal careers.

The team at Flex has always been very responsive, helpful and friendly since the moment I joined. During the onboarding interview, it felt like I was talking to a friend who has a job for you!

Eddy Ng, Flex Paralegal

Where are they now?

As a testament to the high quality work carried out by Flex paralegals, both Eddy and Derin have successfully secured a permanent role with Leigh Day.

Eddy is now a member of the UK Group Litigation Team, and feels excited to be continuing his work with such a justice-driven organisation. Of the experience, he said: “Flex Legal helped me get my foot in the legal industry door, which is highly competitive and hard at times! Thanks to this encouragement and support in finding me placements, I’m more confident in my legal practical knowledge and skills and all these experiences have opened the door for even more legal opportunities and roles.”

Due to Derin’s hard work and perseverance, following her initial six month placement, she was successfully promoted to a supervisor role within Leigh Day. This experience has also provided her with the valuable Qualifying Work Experience (QWE) she needed to fully qualify as a lawyer through the SQE route, all of which she would not have been able to do without this opportunity. Despite being a qualified lawyer in Nigeria, this experience has helped build her confidence in the workplace and gain unique learning experiences to improve as a lawyer.

Working with Flex has been amazing. The team has been very responsive with sending roles to me, incredibly helpful and approachable throughout the entire process.

Derin Agunloye, Flex Paralegal

Looking at the bigger picture, Flex has received an 81% NPS score from our Leigh Day candidates, highlighting the incredible success of our partnership. We also conducted surveys with each candidate and found that over 92% of our paralegals found the supervision and support throughout their placements to be ‘excellent’, and over 96% also found the induction and training before starting their role ‘good/excellent’.

What advice do Eddy and Derin have for any other paralegals looking to break into the legal industry?

“Know your journey - don’t compare and don’t worry about running the rat race. Enjoy and embrace the journey. Everyone is on a different path, and it’s okay if yours doesn’t look like others do. Just do your best! Also gain any experience you can, no experience is a bad experience." - Derin

If you want to see what paralegal work is about, just try it by joining Flex! It’s a really simple way to gain your first legal experience and get your foot into the legal industry with plenty of support!

Eddy Ng, Flex Paralegal

Additional resources:

  • Apply to be a Flex paralegal - Are you interested in interim paralegal opportunities? Flex Legal is here for you! Submit your CV today and apply to the platform.
  • Hire a Flex paralegal - If reading this case study has you scratching your chin, wondering if hiring a Flex paralegal is a good idea, then why not learn more? Click the link to get the ball rolling.
  • How Saad went from Flex Paralegal to Flex Trainee - Paralegals working through Flex don’t stay that way forever. Some of them graduate onto the Flex Trainee scheme, just like Saad did. Read more!