Associate or Senior Associate

  • Bates Wells
  • London, UK
  • May 24, 2021
Associate Senior Associate

Job Description

Why BatesWells?

Our values are important to us, they shape our decisions and our working life.

Making a profit is core to all businesses but our goal is to combine this with a real social purpose. Since opening in 1970, we’ve focussed on positive social impact as much as we have on being a successful law firm and we were the first UK law firm with B Corp certification.

Today, our clients are diverse – from corporate household names, to public bodies, to start-ups. We’re also the firm of choice for thousands of charities and social enterprises.  We continue to lead the market we helped to shape. 

As a purpose and values driven firm we show commitment to our clients, our people, the environment and society.  We see it as our purpose to create a positive impact. The impact we have on our people, our communities and our planet does more than inform our work - it gets us up in the morning.

Bates Wells challenges what is possible in legal expertise delivery.

The Role

We are seeking to appoint an Associate to join our Data Privacy Team

We are investing in our well regarded and growing specialist data privacy team. The team deals with all aspects of data protection and privacy law – the UK GDPR, the EU GDPR, the Data Protection Act 2018 and e-privacy law. We regularly help clients with complex matters that involve regulators as well as supporting clients in data heavy sectors such as AI, as well as core and day-to-day advisory work. The team’s current clients span a wide range of household name charities and grassroots and community organisations, as well as commercial companies and thought leaders in technology and social impact issues.  We encourage our team to explore their networks and expand their thinking as to the type of client we work with.

This is a great opportunity to become an integral part of this growing team where you will be encouraged and supported to take ownership of matters and work closely with clients in this increasingly important area of law.

We encourage our lawyers to pursue their personal interests through their practice; take on early responsibility, including a high degree of client contact; contribute to business development; and work cross-departmentally through our wide range of exceptionally strong sector groups.


Several years prior experience advising on data protection and privacy law is essential. Our permeable team structure ensures a supportive environment coupled with the opportunity to work collaboratively with colleagues across the firm.


We offer greater flexibility than most City firms and welcome applications on a full or part time basis.

Key responsibilities
  • Provide high quality legal advice and strategic approaches to Bates Wells clients
  • Maintain the firm standard of expected client and matter management
  • Provide data privacy advice to internal stakeholders
  • Continue developing your expertise to provide practical advice and increase your profile at the firm
  • Attend and represent Bates Wells at client meetings
  • Develop effective written and oral communication skills to explain technical data protection concepts in clear language
  • Maintain current knowledge of data protection and privacy law and collaborate on developing and providing internal and external client training
  • Engage in the wider data privacy and client networks to develop positive working relationships
  • Actively develop your external profile through speaking and writing opportunities
  • Identify and deliver business development opportunities
  • Maintain awareness and flexibility to respond effectively to the market
  • Support and encourage the growth and development of more junior members of the team and trainees including providing supervision


Specific tasks may change over time, so we’ll need you to be adaptable and flexible as we continue to meet our clients’ needs.

Which qualities do we look for?
  • Qualified UK solicitor 3-7 years’ PQE
  • The ability to build, maintain and nurture relationships
  • A client-centric approach
  • Teamwork – there is a place for individual effort but we highly value a collaborative approach
  • A results-focused mentality – we hope you’ll challenge the status quo if you feel it’ll benefit our work
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills 
  • A genuine interest in the work we do; we encourage questions about the business and invite you to test assumptions and propose ideas


Finally, we want people whose values reflect our own, and who feel inspired working in a firm with a strong social purpose.

What are we like to work for?
  • Our purpose and values both guide and drive us
  • We promote a strong work/life balance
  • We have an agile working environment – this means you might sit next to a different colleague every day or choose to work from our rooftop garden and we actively encourage people to work from home once a week.  During this period of social distancing this is of course much higher, and we are likely to review our policies to enable greater home-working indefinitely.
  • Our culture encourages clear and honest dialogue and cross-team support
  • We can promote our staff throughout the year and there are annual salary reviews
  • We recognise success and contribution at any time of the year through our Recognition Scheme
  • Our benefits and wellbeing package includes firm matching pension contributions, private medical insurance plus a medical benefit cash plan, discretionary bonus arrangements, life assurance, 25 days holiday with the opportunity to buy more, subsidised gym memberships, lifestyle discount scheme, firm-wide profit sharing scheme, on site café, and Summer in the City early-Friday-finish
  • Everyone gets a bonus if there is one - a proportion of the LLP profit is distributed to our people when we exceed our financial thresholds
About the team

The data privacy team at Bates Wells is ranked in the core legal directories. The team works closely with other departments across the firm including our top ranked Charity and Social Enterprise department which handles the most complex, high profile and high value matters for charities, philanthropists and businesses. The depth and breadth of our practice, the range of our technical knowledge and our personal commitment to serve the sector as a whole mean that we also act for clients of all sizes across the whole spectrum of non-profit activity.


We also act for businesses in the impact economy, i.e. those that take a “triple bottom line” approach to their operations, aiming to benefit society and the environment alongside achieving financial success. Such businesses can include (but are not required to be) registered B Corps, benefit corporations, social enterprises or cooperatives. Impact investing is a core sector within the impact economy. Public sector organisations working in partnership with the private sector to deliver initiatives for sustainable development are also an example of activity within the impact economy.

Some extra details
  • Bates Wells is a B Corporation.  B Corporations are profit-making, purpose-driven organisations unified by one goal: to redefine success in business
  • Our people rate us and we made it into the Sunday Times’ ‘Top 100 firms to work’ for in 2018
  • Bates Wells provides legal documents to clients through ‘Get Legal’ – an innovative online documentation portal, which provides an affordable suite of legal documents drafted by sector-leading experts for tailoring by individual users
  • We are committed to your wellbeing and offer physical and mental support in the way of subsidised gym membership, private health care and in-office Mental Health Awareness Ambassadors.
  • We strongly believe that everyone should have the opportunity to reach their full potential whatever their background and believe a diverse team is integral to our success