5 days left
- Full Time
Company Solicitor - Ashford, Kent Job purpose The Junior Solicitor will work within the busy in-house legal team, assisting the Group Secretary and General Counsel, and the other senior solicitors in the team, in providing sound legal and commercial advice to the business. The role will also provide support generally to the legal team, including the assistant company secretary, in conjunction with the paralegal already working in the team. Day-to-day workload will include the preparation and negotiation of customer and supplier contracts and other terms and conditions of business, review and preparation of NDAs, assisting with the management of disputes and general legal queries for the Brakes UK business, the Fresh Direct business and the Pallas/Brakes Ireland business. Dimensions Summarise any numerical facts and figures that are relevant to the scale and degree of activity of the job such as budgets that they are accountable for or accountability for profit, sales turnover, savings or project spend etc. How many staff are they responsible for? How many direct reports? Which part of the organisation does the role have an impact on? The role requires a qualified solicitor, either newly qualified or up to 1-2 years' pqe, depending on experience. This will be a demanding role, which now incorporates the much wider remit of Brakes UK, Fresh Direct and Pallas/Brakes Ireland. The support role is critical right across the business, and whilst does not have any direct accountability for profit, turnover, project spend or staff etc, it can have an often unquantifiable impact on future costs, if we are ensuring we have watertight contracts in place with our customers and suppliers, which ensure we don't enter in to costly disputes in the future. This will be a key role within the team, ensuring that the senior solicitors in the team are freed up to work on the bigger customer contracts and training of the sales teams. It is anticipated that this role will focus on key account contracts and large scale bid documents. The former are critical to locking in large scale independent business, which is a current focus, and the latter are very time intensive, but important, exercises, to ensure nothing is missed during the tender process, and that we are entering into a tender process with our eyes fully open. This role will need to identify when it is appropriate to refer matters to either of the senior solicitors in the team, or to the Group Secretary and General Counsel, either for advice, or for escalation within the business. Role context Summarise the operating environment that this role will be working within and how it fits in with the rest of the organisation. What are the frameworks and boundaries (e.g. policies & procedures) that will constrain this role, or will this role be setting these? What are the main challenges this role faces? What timeframes will this role be planning and organising within? As above, this will be a demanding role; the legal team is a very small team with many conflicting demands, from many conflicting businesses (as well as different areas within those businesses), so the team's workload is heavy, and the team is always working to very tight timelines, and working with all levels of colleagues across the business. This will be a continuing challenge, and one that the role will need to learn to manage on a day-to-day basis. This role will report to the Group Secretary and General Counsel, but on a day-to-day basis, the role will work with the two senior solicitors in the team. Principal accountabilities The review and negotiation of customer contracts and any other legal contracts (including trading agreements, service agreements, confidentiality agreements, terms and conditions of sale/purchase) with suppliers and customers of the Brakes UK, Fresh Direct and Pallas/Brakes Ireland businesses. To provide legal advice on demand to internal colleagues at all levels across the above businesses, on a wide variety of topics, under the guidance of the solicitors in the team. To provide cover for fellow solicitors in the team, as required due to team's workload or absence. Strive to improve professional development across the team by researching and investigating new legal developments, to keep the team abreast of forthcoming changes. Contribute towards implementing compliance and legal processes across the business. Ensure the business has a clear understanding of the contracts which they have in place, and assist in the implementation of technology within the legal team. Strike up and build a strong rapport with internal teams. Work autonomously as well as within a close-knit team environment. Knowledge, skills, experience and competencies Educated to degree level. Qualified solicitor 2 to 3 years post qualification experience. In-house experience desirable. Excellent negotiation skills. Sound technical knowledge and good experience of commercial contract law. Strong team player with a ‘can do', flexible attitude and a commercial approach with excellent organisational, communication and written skills. MS Office - minimum of intermediate Excel, Word, Outlook. Strong communication skills with the ability to interact at all levels both internally and externally. Excellent time management skills with the ability to manage conflicting priorities and demands from different areas of the business. Ability to identify legal matters that must be escalated to the Group Secretary & Legal Counsel, or other solicitors in the team, for guidance and/or decision. Exercise sound judgment in decision making and be able to support judgments and decisions made. Maintain the highest possible professional and ethical standards at all times. Willing to assume responsibility and accountability in all relevant areas. Ability to negotiate commercial and practical resolutions to problems with tact and diplomacy. Strong desire to complete and succeed at all tasks even when faced with onerous challenges.