WHO WE ARE
Slaughter and May is a leading international law firm, recognised throughout the business community for its exceptional legal service, commercial awareness and commitment to clients. We advise across the spectrum of legal matters including high-profile, ground-breaking and complex transactions, contentious matters and all aspects of risk. We deliver innovative and bespoke solutions to our clients, domestically and internationally, providing clear legal advice that spans the globe whilst tackling the cultural nuances between jurisdictions. Our lawyers understand how to coordinate and manage matters in the jurisdictions most relevant to our clients.
At Slaughter and May, with over 1,200 partners and staff worldwide, everyone's contribution is valued, and we all enjoy an open, friendly and supportive environment. We have an underlying sense of pride in who we are and what we do, and our inclusive culture gives rise to a unique diversity of thinking, which is critical to our success and helps maintain our position as a true market leader. To support our employees in achieving their professional development objectives, we offer an unrivalled variety of learning and development opportunities to everyone, as well as a highly competitive salary and a comprehensive benefits package. In light of the continuing coronavirus pandemic, the firm has evolved a new hybrid approach to working, which sees our people working between their respective remote environments and our prestigious Headquarters at One Bunhill Row, in the heart of the City of London.
Would you like to join one of the world’s most prestigious law firms?
We are offering a fantastic opportunity for a professional and engaging individual to join us as an IP PSL, as an integral part of our London-based IP and Technology Group.
OUR IP PRACTICE
Our Intellectual Property practice is part of our IP and Technology Group and advises clients on all aspects of the creation, exploitation and enforcement of intellectual property rights. Our clients operate in a wide range of sectors including life sciences, biotechnology and healthcare, technology, financial services, telecommunications, media, publishing, sport, consumer goods and retail.
Our work encompasses:
- Commercial IP agreements such as licences, R&D collaborations and franchisings
- Corporate transactions, often where IP is a key asset, including M&A and joint ventures
- IP litigation and disputes
In addition to this broad IP practice, the IP and Technology Group also has a leading technology and digital practice which encompasses IT development, licensing and procurement, IT outsourcing, emerging technologies (including cloud, AI and blockchain), Cyber and IT disputes, litigation and investigations.
These areas are the overall responsibility of a separate Technology PSL Counsel. However, our broad technology and digital practices offer substantial areas of overlap for our IP and IT work, and our IP PSL will have responsibility for dealing with the IP aspects of these topics.
We are looking for an experienced practising lawyer or Professional Support Lawyer (PSL) to join our IP and Technology practice support team on a permanent basis. Experience must have been gained in a leading practice and include exposure to as broad as possible a range of IP work such as disputes, IP- related agreements such as trade mark and patent licensing, distribution and franchise agreements, M&A/JVs and other transactional work as well as desktop IP portfolio searching (trade marks, patents, domain names). Prior experience as a PSL is not essential. The coordination of the IP and Technology practice support team is the ultimate responsibility of our Technology PSL Counsel, and the IP PSL will therefore have a dotted reporting line to the Technology PSL Counsel in addition to reporting to the four IP and Technology Group partners.
The IP PSL will have individual responsibility for building and disseminating IP knowledge and supporting the IP practice. Although the principal focus of the role will relate to IP, the successful candidate will be expected to take the lead on broader IP and Technology practice support initiatives. Both the IP and Technology PSLs are supported by an established Knowledge & Information professional, as well as dedicated BD resource and an executive assistant. The role also includes supporting the firm’s Life Sciences practice so experience in this area would be helpful but is not a prerequisite.
The IP PSL can expect to have substantial direct contact with Partners (and other fee-earners) from across the firm. PSLs should have genuine enthusiasm for the use of technology and innovation in the support of fee-earners and clients. All PSLs in the firm have a dotted line report to the Director of Knowledge & Innovation, and work closely with our central Knowledge & Innovation department as well as with the
Business Development and Learning & Development departments.
PSLs at the firm must demonstrate technical excellence and legal expertise in their area. They have responsibility for building best practice processes for creating, capturing, curating and disseminating knowledge and supporting the practice. PSLs are expected to apply a practical and client-centric focus to know-how, and to produce timely and insightful content, which they impart using a variety of channels.
PSLs need to be able to be flexible, work well in a team, generate ideas, be self-sufficient and proactive, and actively project manage their own deliverables. PSLs can expect to have substantial contact with fee- earners from across the firm, and will need to develop strong working relationships at all levels within the firm.
The key responsibilities of this role are set out below and there may be others, which are not listed. The IP PSL may require some working outside our normal working hours of 9:30am to 5:30pm.
External facing: client publications, client training, industry or legal consultations and committees
- Writing, editing or assisting in the preparation of client briefings on topical issues
- Drafting and delivering or assisting fee earners in preparation and delivery of client training
- Replying to or contributing to replies to industry or legal consultations
- Participating in, attending, or assisting fee earners’ participation in, external committees, conferences and events
Pitches, directories and website
- Contributing practice specific content to firm- wide pitches and relevant sections of our website
- Assisting with submissions to legal directories
- Supporting internal business development initiatives, with an emphasis on content
Legal service innovation
- Supporting firmwide legal service innovation initiatives including those that use technology to promote practice efficiency.
- Keeping up to date with legal and commercial developments that affect our practices and clients
- Co-ordinating and contributing to the organization, capture, review and creation of know-how (including relevant precedents) and ensuring that this is loaded onto our know- how systems
- Working with the Knowledge & Information professional to produce regular internal publications on IP developments
- Drafting, maintaining and commenting on standard documents
- Maintaining, organising and updating the relevant practice pages on the firm's intranet
- Contributing to or editing updates and articles for internal know-how briefings
- Responding to queries from fee earners or other PSLs
- Devising, co-ordinating and implementing a series of dedicated IP-focused training programmes for fee-earners of varying levels of seniority
- Drafting and delivering (and assisting fee earners in preparation of) training for our lawyers.
Candidates for this position will be someone who:
Technical competence and knowledge
- Has comprehensive knowledge and experience of technical and industry developments that affect our practice and clients
- Acts as the go-to person for fee-earners with queries about law and market practice in the IP and Technology sector
- Builds best practice processes for the creation, capture, review, curation and dissemination of knowledge
- Identifies opportunities for producing timely and insightful current awareness, client content, thought leadership content and training material
- Designs, drafts and delivers dedicated training programmes for fee-earners of varying levels of seniority
- Identifies opportunities for supporting client relationships, with an emphasis on content, including direct contact with clients where appropriate
- Engages in business development opportunities such as contributing to client publications, client training and pitches
- Builds an external profile through activities such as speaking at conferences, writing for external publications, responding to industry or legal consultations, and participating in professional bodies
- Engages with fee-earners to inform strategic decisions about knowledge priorities
- Participates in firmwide initiatives in areas such as legal tech, innovation and compliance
- Seeks opportunities to undertake process improvement initiatives
- Mitigates risk by scanning the horizon for legal, regulatory and market developments
- Speaks with authority on technical topics to a wide range of audiences
- Builds strong relationships with fee-earners, other PSLs and Business Services teams
- Actively promotes integration with other practice support resource.