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Associate / Senior Associate

Company Gowling WLG Location Birmingham
Contract Permanent Position Salary Competitive
Sector(s) Legal

Job Description

We have more than 1,400 legal professionals working around the world. Our offices span across 19 cities in Canada, the UK, Continental Europe, Asia and the Middle East. There's strength in our global presence – we embrace our differing cultures and work together as one team. We also understand the importance of investing in relationships that build knowledge and trust, while we provide legal advice that's tailored to our clients' world.

'Our people and distinct culture are what makes us different. We know this through client and employee feedback and this drives everything we do''

 Chris Oglethorpe, HR Director.

There are great opportunities for all our people to flourish. Through training and personal development they can grow in their role. Our people are the cornerstone of our success, across legal, business support and early talent. We care about their happiness and believe in the power of teamwork. We want them to feel empowered and recognise that by supporting, respecting and embracing everyone's different contributions we achieve more.

Working flexibly, working fairly

Agile working offers people more freedom and flexibility in where, when, and how they work. As technology advances and our workforce becomes more diverse – and with clients often working to a 24/7 rhythm – having extra flexibility is key to helping us balance work and other commitments sensibly and productively.

By supporting people to choose where and when they get their work done, we help them to make a full and fair contribution to their team – while maintaining that all important work-life balance.

Where possible and depending on business needs, we will consider all flexible working options such as part-time working, job sharing, working from home and staggered hours. If in considering a role with Gowling WLG you favour flexibility in your working arrangements, please discuss this with the recruitment team in the early stages of the application process.

About the Team

Energy is one of the most dynamic and economically robust sectors of the UK economy, and with fundamental changes being promulgated by Government it is an exciting time for commercial lawyers to utilise their legal skill sets in a sector which is going through extensive change.

Our Energy team is extremely highly regarded in the UK market.  We are consistently recognised as a leading energy practice in both Legal 500 and Chambers and, in 2013. We are named one of Legal 500's Projects, Energy and National Resources firms of the year.

We have a reputation for being at the forefront of the fast moving sector and providing technically excellent advice in a robust, pragmatic and friendly manner.  We pride ourselves on our supportive and business-driven approach. 

Our work is broad ranging. It includes both advising on (and often developing) a wide range of commercial contracts, agreements and Codes relevant to the energy sector - from long term highly valuable power purchase and fuel supply agreements to multi-party industry Codes and standard supply, terms and advising on (and often being at the forefront of) major Government led transformation programmes and the application of incentive mechanisms.

We are also heavily involved in supporting energy transactional work- development projects, corporate transactions and energy financing. Our role includes helping structure projects to ensure they fit within and benefit from the various regulatory regimes and incentive mechanisms underpinning the sector and advising on the suite of commercial contracts that are relevant to any energy project. Our sector specialism means we are often the route in to transactional work in the energy space.

Our clients include the UK Government (we have advised the Department of Energy & Climate Change on a number of cutting edge sector critical programmes), overseas Governments, Regulatory bodies, major utilities, project  developers, network owners and operators, suppliers and traders and funders. Their requirements are diverse, but all receive first class commercially focused advice from a team that is deeply immersed in the sector.

Our practice is thriving. We have grown continuously over the last 5 years, both in top-line revenue and profits terms and have a varied and high quality client base that sees our services very much in demand.

Each member of the team has a client facing role and is given the opportunity to develop client relationships. This role is no different and provides a real opportunity to develop a range of client handling skills. You will therefore be good at dealing directly with clients (with appropriate levels of support) both on the telephone and in face to face to meetings.

The team is tight-knit and not at all hierarchical. There are three partners, one Director, two associates, one solicitor and two PAs. Some members of the team are principally regulatory focused, others (like the person required for this role) have more of a commercial focus. However we work seamlessly together utilising those skill sets to deliver a first class service to our clients whatever their requirements.  We also frequently work with specialist lawyers from across the wider firm on transactional energy mandates.

Working in an inclusive, sharing and collaborative culture, your success will be integral to ensure the continuing success and growth of the team over the long term.

Key skills and experience
  • You will be able to demonstrate strong academic performance and good experience of advising on (including drafting and negotiating) a wide variety of commercial agreements including complex contracts. Strong commercial contracts experience is a pre –requisite of the role. Energy experience (or experience of advising in other regulated sectors) is desirable, though not essential.
  • Energy stakeholders also often require advice on the application of relevant law (including new developments) to their business. You will also have the strong research skills and the ability and confidence to produce accurate, succinct written advice to clients.
  • You will be level headed and pragmatic, willing to learn and prepared to apply the commercial contracts and advisory skill sets you have developed (and will continue to develop) in a different and exciting context.
  • The appointment is Birmingham-based - but the role requires flexibility.  Our work often takes us to London, whether for London based clients or for meetings with counterparty advisors (who are often major City based lawyers).  You need to be flexible enough to work out of our London office as required by the needs of the business.
Equal Opportunities

Gowling WLG is committed both to promoting equality and diversity in the firm and to Equal Opportunities in employment.  The firm believes in equality of opportunity regardless of race or racial group (including colour, nationality, ethnicity, national origins), religion or belief, age, disability, sexual orientation, sex, gender re-assignment and gender identity, marriage and civil partnership, and pregnancy, maternity and paternity.  This also includes any incidents of perceptive or associative discrimination and harassment.

At Gowling WLG we seek to attract and retain talented people from a diverse range of backgrounds and cultures, to create an exciting and rewarding place to work.  Our aim is to fulfil everyone's potential and together to achieve personal and business goals.


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