Global law firm Reed Smith was this week named winner of ‘CSR Programme of the Year’ at the Legal Business Awards in London.
The firm was also shortlisted for ‘Finance Team of the Year’ in relation to its role advising Marathon Asset Management on the acquisition of Lloyds Banking Group’s first continental commercial real estate non-performing loan portfolio.
The CSR award recognised the firm or individual who had made the strongest overall contribution to corporate social responsibility. In particular, Reed Smith’s diversity programme was acknowledged for its achievements in attracting and recruiting disabled candidates. By working with external partners, improving communications and reviewing its practices and procedures, the firm has significantly increased the number of applications received by disabled candidates.
In 2014, Reed Smith received 65 applications from disabled candidates for the summer vacation scheme and made five training contract offers to disabled applicants, all of which were accepted.
Sakil Suleman, partner and head of the firm’s UK Diversity Committee, commented:
“Reed Smith works continuously to foster an inclusive environment. We are committed and determined to attract candidates from the widest pool possible. This award is a great endorsement of the initiatives and strong partnerships we have developed in working towards our aim to become the law firm of choice for disabled candidates. We are pleased to have been recognised for our efforts and we’re excited to build on this in the coming years.”
The firm recently rebranded from CSR to Responsible Business to reflect what, as Michael Skrein, the EMEA responsible business partner, states, “sits at the core of the business’ practices and strategy and reflects its ethical responsibility to the communities in which we work, our clients, our personnel and the world in which we live, and want to live”.
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