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Personal Assistant

Providing secretarial support to our shipping (transactional) lawyers in a range of activities as well as act as workflow manager for other support services

The role

To take an active interest in and obtain a thorough understanding of all aspects of client requirements to provide exceptional service levels to both lawyers and clients, and act as workflow manager for other support services, including delegating the completion of document production, file management and copying/scanning work.

Key responsibilities

In line with policies and procedures, key responsibilities include:

Client relationship management:

  • Support lawyers in marketing and BD activities, including:
  • Enter new contact information onto the CRM system (InterAction) and keep the data up-to-date;
  • Ensure that lawyers’ client activities and PD reports are recorded on the CRM;
  • Keep lawyers’ bios up-to-date;
  • Create first draft speaker profiles for particular events;
  • Assist BD with capability statements and pitches;
  • Assist BD with client events: create mailing list, invitations (Vuture), monitor responses; source corporate event suppliers; set up webinars;
  • Open and close cases in compliance with case management procedures (IntApp);
  • Become an active part in the care of clients and be wholly familiar with contacts/clients;
  • Deal with basic client queries and general administration;
  • Arrange client meetings.


  • Assist lawyers in ensuring their time is recorded properly and entered onto the system on a daily basis;
  • Chase and post disbursements, eg. counsel fees, on practice management system (Elite 3E);
  • Assist lawyers in the billing and credit control process by liaising with the lawyer and Revenue & Collections team to produce standard financial/time reports through the system;
  • Send bills to clients and record dates of bills sent on practice management system;
  • Request cheques, bank transfers and pay in money received, as appropriate;
  • Reclaim BD expenses.


  • Manage diaries, ensuring they are up-to-date, and remind lawyers of meetings, etc. on a daily basis;
  • Arrange meetings, book conference rooms (Condeco), refreshments/catering, check room set-up prior to meetings and liaise with other attendees, both internal and external;
  • Liaise with Learning & Development Department regarding CPD;
  • Arrange subscriptions/renewals of professional memberships;
  • Arrange for travel bookings and related details, including travel itineraries and expenses;
  • Arrange scanning, photocopying, printing, organising couriers, sending out of letters, etc;
  • Arrange for documents to be eSigned (DocuSign);
  • Arrange for files to be opened and closed; general filing requirements (Work Panel) and record-keeping;
  • Use effective systems to ensure that both short and long-term tasks are completed within required timescales.


  • Take internal and external queries, responding as appropriate and/or ensuring that all messages are passed on in a timely manner;
  • Monitor post and/or e-mails and deal with as appropriate and ensure that all client-related correspondence is passed on to an appropriate fee earner if the relevant person is out of the office;
  • Liaise with business support departments on behalf of lawyers as required;
  • Liaise with the Team Leader regarding arranging cover for planned absences, as necessary and communicating this to the relevant fee earners.

Document production:

  • Draft standard letters, eg. client care letters, as and when required;
  • Check that correspondence, attachments, documents, reports, presentations, etc. produced by the Document Production team are returned in good time and undertake basic/minor amendments where appropriate;
  • Type urgent/short/confidential correspondence;
  • Produce and maintain Excel spreadsheets as required.

Team Work:

  • Assist others in the Group, both proactively whenever there is spare capacity or it is evident that a colleague needs assistance with their workload and at the request of the Team Leader;
  • Provide cover for colleagues;
  • Pick up telephone calls for other members of the Group when they are away from their desk;
  • Work effectively with other legal and business services departments as required.

Any other ad hoc duties as reasonably requested.

Key skills & experience required

The PA has responsibility to ensure that their skill set is up-to-date, and that they are familiar with the firm’s groups, departments, key personnel, clients, internal systems and procedures.

In addition:

  • Two years’ previous experience in a law firm.
  • Knowledge of Microsoft Word, Outlook, PowerPoint, Excel, research tools and other systems implemented by the firm.
  • Excellent customer service skills, dealing with people and tasks in a professional, polite and considerate manner.
  • Excellent telephone manner and competent knowledge of telephone system.
  • Excellent communication, organisational and team skills.
  • Excellent attention to detail.
  • Flexible and dependable, able to take the initiative.
  • Able to remain calm under pressure and work to tight deadlines.
  • Conscientious, approachable and enthusiastic.
  • Able to build confidence, respect and trust with others quickly.
  • Have a positive approach to daily tasks and have a solutions-focussed working method.
  • Flexible with regard to working hours, arriving earlier and staying later when the job or business requires.

Additional Information

Kindly note that this job description is not contractual.  It will be reviewed periodically and may be amended or altered to meet the needs of the firm.

HFW aims to ensure equality of opportunity, and we are actively working towards improving the diversity of our staff.  All applications will be considered only on merit and the applicant’s suitability to meet the requirements of the role.

HFW collects and processes personal data relating to job applicants to manage its recruitment process.  The firm is committed to being transparent about how it collects and uses that data and to meeting its data protection obligations.  For information on how the firm will process your data, please see our Privacy Notice on our website (, in the section “What we collect and how we use it”.

About HFW

HFW is a sector focused global law firm.  We have over 700 lawyers working across the Americas, Europe, the Middle East, Asia and Australia.  We take a progressive approach to our roles in commercial business – thinking creatively and pragmatically to support our clients.

Whether we are solving complex issues within the construction, aviation or shipping industries, or providing advice across insurance, commodities and energy we are specialist lawyers here to add value to our clients.  We think about the commercial solution first, and then underpin our advice with a solid foundation of legal expertise.

Vacancy Details
Full time
Posted 3/06/2024
Providing support in a range of activities as well as acting as workflow manager for other support services.