James Batt – managing director of BCL Legal - on the launch of BCL Graduates...

Our business is about many things but placing talent is at its very core and this is something we try to never lose sight of. Many recruitment businesses chase fees; don’t get me wrong... we are a commercially focused organisation but our philosophy isn’t about making a quick buck... it’s about adding long-term value, growing with our candidates and partnering with our clients. This isn’t some kind of ‘airy fairy’ philosophy; we live and breathe it and I’m proud to say the latest incarnation of that is the launch of BCL Graduates which aims to help talented graduates get their first step on the legal career ladder... for free.

We’ve been working on this for over a year and we’ve honed the service after talking to – and taking advice from - law firms, colleges and candidates. We wanted to make it the best it possibly could be and the free service – along with its accompanying website - is available to graduates and paralegals who have less than six months experience in the law. The concept and process is simple; graduates simply register their details on the website, upload their CV and complete their profile. They then indicate what and where they have studied, their grades, electives, the locations they have ties to, their interests and when they are available from.

Law firms also register and - once verified - they can directly search for candidates based on the key criteria. The site acts as an online meeting place as firms can contact their preferred candidates to arrange interviews at no charge.  We are working in close partnership with regional BPP Law Schools and Colleges of Law as well as Kaplan Law School to promote and market the service to graduates past and present.

We know that it can be tough for graduates to secure their first position so we wanted to devise a simple to use and accessible platform to help them.  We also wanted to give something back to all the law firms around the UK that have made BCL Legal a success over the past nine years. This seemed like the ideal service as it enables law firms and graduates to connect. Plus, it will also save on marketing and recruitment spend which can only be a good thing in such challenging times.

Our aim is to now grow and nurture BCL Graduates so firms of all sizes and the very best young talent see it as their first port of call. Feedback so far has been brilliant - with several firms already signed up - and you can view the new website at www.bclgraduates.com

We’d be keen to hear what readers of The Brief think about the launch so do drop me a line if you have any suggestions or ideas on how we could make it even better.