Friday 30 April 2021 11:25 am

Clifford Chance to work minimum of 50 per cent in the office post-pandemic

Clifford Chance will expect staff to be in the office for at least 50 per cent of the week post-pandemic, as the law firm moves to a more flexible way of working.

The new approach means staff at the Magic Circle law firm could work remotely for up to 50 per cent of the time.

Clifford Chance is hoping to make the changes by 21 June, in line with the easing of lockdown restrictions.

Regional managing partner Michael Bates said: “In listening to feedback from our people and considering how to support high performance, productivity and wellbeing, we believe we should work in a more agile and flexible way than we have historically. 

“We are therefore looking to establish an approach that will balance flexibility with the collaboration, teamwork, creativity, training, development and other benefits we gain from spending time in our office environment.  “

The law firm has already enacted the help of Cushman Wakefield, a real estate services firm, to carry out a review of its London property requirements that could eventually see its office space reduced.

Clifford Chance is the latest Magic Circle firm to commit to a more flexible way of working.

Freshfields will allow staff to work flexibly for 50 per cent of the time while Allen & Overy will expect staff to be in the office three days per week.

Linklaters was the first to adopt a global flexible policy, and has said staff can work remotely for 20 to 50 per cent of the time.

Slaughter & May has surveyed its staff and is processing their views.

Ministers have formed a task force to draw up advice on flexible working.

The government has not yet issued any guidance on when workers should return to the office, leaving firms looking to one another to set industry standards.

A group of 20 business groups and trade unions will consider how the government and businesses can support the change to hybrid working, and whether more could be done to promote “ad hoc” flexible working arrangements.