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Firm of the Year Loser: Parabis gets the Golden Turd
31 January 2014
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Parabis Group came a resounding last in the RollOnFriday Firm of the Year 2014 survey. The personal injury firm scooped the Golden Turd with a miserable 41% overall score.

What could it possibly have done to deserve it? Quite a lot, it seems. "In-fighting and politics, incapable staff, poor systems - do I need to go on?" asks one lawyer. The firm's management scored a rotten 27% and was blasted for providing "appalling support and infrastructure". "Mean to the point of embarassing", agreed one associate. "My floor has 50 fee earners and one white book" and, when staff requested another, "we were told the senior partner would himself have to authorise the expenditure. Three weeks later, a flat refusal".

    One for the back of the trophy cabinet


Parabis also scored poorly for career development, of which there is "absolutely none" according to one lawyer. "No desire amongst staff to promote from within" says a colleague. "If your hours are down, or your face doesn't fit, you will be managed out". The firm also scored just 30% for pay, with associates grumbling that salaries "are low and barely move". As for the working environment, it is "anonymous, like working at Tesco", says one staffer, with "vast rooms filled with rows of desks - a massive claims handling factory, overseen by **** *****". Oh dear.

But it isn't completely nightmarish. Parabis scored reasonably for work/life balance (61%) with several respondents echoing the view that the "hours are easy". Plus there's a "beer budget every month", the London office has "some of the nicest people I've ever worked with", and, erm, "the disabled toilets are nice to cry in".



Clarke Willmott came second to last. It was blasted for "dreadful" pay and "infighting and bickering between teams and offices". As for the firm's attempt to start an organised training programme, "the 'CW School of Management' is an embarrassment - partners randomly talk about topics like 'how to record more time' or 'how I poached clients from my former firm'". Mostly, though, Clarke Willmott lawyers talk about their peers leaving "like rats jumping from a sinking ship". That's despite the fact that "we got new pens this year".

Last year DAC Beachcroft came second to last, but this year it's moved up one spot, and at its current trajectory will win RollOnFriday Firm of the Year 2054. It gets credit for engaging in "lots of pro bono for its insurer clients" and for its "great" people. But everything else? Not so much. DAC lawyers describe salaries as "shocking" and "shit" and bonuses as "unattainable". Fee-earners, grumbles one, "would earn more cleaning the files than running them". And despite healthy profits, says another, "we are constantly told that margins are squeezed and so we are unlikely to (ever) get a pay rise".

There was one happy camper though: the DAC partner who responded to the survey question 'Good things?' with "Excellent", the question 'Bad things?' with "Excellent" and the question 'Anything else?' with "Excellent". Roll on 2054.

Comments

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anonymous user
27/05/2016 10:31
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Escaped a reprimand, but I can see them having an uncomfortable time applying for NQ roles at the firm when qualification rolls around...
anonymous user
27/05/2016 10:43
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Does the anonymous user at 10.31 have experience of this? Or is this comment totally unfounded?
anonymous user
27/05/2016 11:11
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Does the AC at 10:43 work for Stephenson Harwood? #NoSenseOfHumour
anonymous user
28/05/2016 00:23
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Do either of the previous commentators have lives #hypocritalert #yawn
anonymous user
28/05/2016 18:32
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If I had my time again I would apply for a training contract there - sounds wild
anonymous user
29/05/2016 18:38
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Anonymous 0023 - if the comments section bores you so, why do you read it? And then add another comment? #attention seeker#extractthatbroomhandlefromyouranus
  

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