Bond Dickinson wins National Apprenticeship Award

National law firm Bond Dickinson has won the Newcomer Large Employer of the Year award at the National Apprenticeship Awards.

Organised by the National Apprenticeship Service, the awards showcase the very best apprenticeship employers and apprentices in the UK and recognise excellence in businesses growing their own talent through apprenticeships schemes.

Bond Dickinson was amongst the first law firms to make legal apprenticeships available, with the first apprentices joining the business in 2014. Paula Dillon in the firm’s Leeds office initiated the Leeds Legal apprenticeship scheme which aims to make Leeds the first city in the UK with at least one apprentice in every firm. The firm currently has eleven apprentices nationally, seven working as legal apprentices and another four employed in the firm’s support services teams. Following the success of the scheme, the firm is now rolling out further apprenticeships across other business functions and locations.

Paula Dillon of Bond Dickinson’s Leeds office, said: “We are delighted to have won this award. Apprenticeships are at the heart of the Strong Economy, Compassionate City agenda which our Leeds office supports. We took on apprentices because it was the right thing to do – for social mobility, improved staff retention and for the future of our business. Recruiting apprentices as paralegals allows us to attract smart, enthusiastic and engaged people into law – people who previously might not have thought a career in law was within their aspiration or reach.

“Being recognised by the National Apprenticeship Service is tremendous news for the firm. It is a tribute to the value apprentices bring to our business and to the work that has been put in by the whole firm to make our programme a real success story.”

 Sue Husband, Director, National Apprenticeship Service was host on the night. She concluded:

“The National Apprenticeship Awards have highlighted once again the magnificent range of apprenticeships on offer – with leading employers in exciting industries – and the skills that apprentices gain when taking on these roles.

“Every year this event gets bigger and better, bringing to the forefront of our minds the importance of apprenticeships to local, regional and national economies. Apprenticeships are for everyone and I personally thank each and every employer and apprentice recognised at Friday’s event for their commitment to apprenticeships.”

The ceremony also saw Bond Dickinson LLP named in the prestigious Top 100 Apprenticeship Employer list. The list, which is compiled annually by the National Apprenticeship Service, sponsored by Centrica, recognises excellence in businesses that employ apprentices.

Bond Dickinson provides legal services across a wide range of sectors including energy, manufacturing, financial services, insurance, retail, insurance, transport and private wealth from seven offices spread across the UK and employs more than 1,200 people around the country.