Training contract at Travers Smith!

Travers Smith

I specifically joined this site because I think you can help me! I have a training contract interview with Travers next week and Im super worried as Im not sure how to prepare! I’d love to get a place with them as I’ve heard so many great things abt them. I just wondered what you think they would ask in the interview, and how I can do really well?


Travers Smith, think they’re mainly concerned with corporate law (takeovers and mergers, financial services, regulatory laws) and commercial law (competition and intellectual property). Prepare for Private Equity questions, prepare for commercial type questions, prepare stuff on credit crunch for example. Read the FT, a lot…! Go to the Economist website too, they have a video podcast round up of the week’s commercial news which I find really helpful, preparing for stuff like this…

Hmmm…think further about financial services as I think their biggest/most notable deals have been advising such companies on legal regulations in UK/Europe.

They’ve got a media/entertainment focus too, although I think it’s relatively small. Because of this, they are less likely to ask you questions relating to this at interview, but you might like to find out more about it as they’ve had some interesting clients: NTL, they helped these guys to restructure their interactive services, for example.



Hello TLD and welcome to the forums :slight_smile:

Thanks Tatters - good info! I agree that you should research and think strongly about financial services and private equity so that you can (a) talk about the firm’s work in these areas specifically, and (b) talk about Private Equity and Financial Services - what they are, how they work, etc - if commerical q’s come up.

In terms of structure, I’m not sure exactly what the interview process is for this firm… perhaps you can confirm things once you’ve had yours…!

I have heard from some people that the interview is a one stage process, but from others that it’s two - probably, it just gets varied due to time constraints, or the firm jump certain applicants straight to the second interview if they look really good on paper. Some 50/50 candidates might get called back for a second grilling too… just make sure you impress them when you meet them and hopefully that’ll be it!

What I do know about interviews here is that there are usually no written tests, case studies or anything of that sort to worry about. Your interview (or interviews) will be a straight forward discussion/question session, where a lawyer from the firm (most probably a partner or associate) will ask you questions. These will include common questions (why law, why Travers, what you think you will you be doing in your first year at Travers), questions about your application/CV (academics, education, extra curricula, etc) and further tough questions which may relate to ethics and law, morals, and issues involving torture/death penalty/war in conjunction with the law.

Tough interviewers may try to confuse you and try to get you to contradict yourself (partners are smart enough to do this - and they often do(!)) …just make sure you are prepared to argue your point of view, whatever it is. They want to see you can back up your opinions with sensible, intelligent reasoning, and not just get confused and back down when things get tough. Your interview should last about an hour.

Good luck - let us know how things go and what kind of questions they’re asking! :slight_smile:



o thankyou so much you guys! This is so helpful! I shall start cramming in all the travers info tomorrow!!! It feels like i need to know absolutely everything abt them!

Love to you all! mwah! xx


It’s definitely a two stage process.

The first interview is with one partner and usually last around half an hour. Your partner asks some questions about your application, and questions that aim to find out about your beliefs and personal opinions.

The second interview is with two partners. This usually lasts around an hour and a half, and they will ask you a wide variety of questions. It will be highly business/economics-based, and you should prepare for this and pay attention to the FT and general news in teh lead up to your interivew. Be prepared give opinions on major issues and to argue your side if you are put under pressure with opposing arguments from the partners. You need to be confident and show you are intelligent and strong willed enough to stand up for yourself.



thanks loads Law Boy! Ive just had my first interview - I’ll let you know if I get to the second round! xx :slight_smile:


ooh btw! I must let you know how the first interview went --> it was litterally quite tough! The partner was a really sweet guy n he asked lots of questions that really tested me on how I can reason and argue.

So, he asked, an investment bank has just accepted lots of money from a foreign investor - and they will give this money to their staff in the form of bonuses - is this right?
And I said Yep! bcos they need to ensure that they can retain their staff…

They also asked me, if I could change any Law what wld I change --> n so i talked abt something I was passionate about!

Hope that helps anybody readin this! love to all the wiki ppl! :slight_smile: xxx


…did you get one partner or two? How long was the interview? Were there competency questions as well as law based ones?

I’m not so hot on investment banking, but I don’t think staff would receive bonuses if a foreign investor gave an investment bank loads of cash. Did you ask him to explain specifically why the investor was giving them all the cash? First - investment banks give their bonuses as a percentage of yearly profits in May don’t they, so bankers are unlikely to get a one off bonus from a investment deal. Further, aren’t the bonuses worked out as a percentage of profit gained by the company, rather than percentage of investment? All a little confusing! …you probably know more than me anyhow…!

If I could change a law I’d make heroin use essential for 100% of chavs. This would reduce chav like behaviour. It’s a win-win situation for everyone involved.

Well done anyway - good luck!


hey lawboy - I think the essence of the question really was whether it was fair to give staff bonuses -when the money was primarily a loan. I didnt really need to go into the details, but the fundamentals were based on assessing the short term risk of a fall in share price etc, and the long term need to keep staff happy n retain them…

I really hope i get in - havent heard bk from them yet!

Btw, hav u got a place with them Lawboy? xx


btw! in answer to ur questions - I got one partner - at the second interview, there are 2 partners, and the interview went on for around 40 mins, and there were no case studies xx


…those sound like pretty interesting questions actually! Regarding the first interview, were you asked basic competency questions too and were you asked about your CV/experience and desire for a career in law?

Good luck TLD - let us know if you get the second stage, we’re all rooting for you :slight_smile:


hiya! funnily enough, I wasnt asked why I wanted Travers - but I was asked why law. Also I wasnt asked, "name a time when you had to work with a bunch of morons and explain what you acheived… " so that was lucky! And there were no case studies! I really hope i get thru to the next stage! Thanks Ed! xx


…did you get through TLD?!

Travers Smith | WikiJob


o thankyou so much you guys! This is so helpful! I shall start cramming in all the travers info tomorrow!!! It feels like i need to know absolutely everything abt them!

Love to you all! mwah! xx


I’ve got my first round training contract interview on Friday…if I can give you guys any more helpful info I will pass it on!!


Has anyone got through to the second round yet? I have afirst round interview coming up in the next week and I don’t really know how to prepare…

I’ve had a few other interviews and they have mostly been competency based but I wouldn’t know how to go about answering the question that TLD got!

If anyone else has got any more example questions it would be really helpful or any tips to get past this round?