International firm Baker McKenzie is to review its entire business support team, part of what it calls a drive to ensure 'sustainable profitability’. The firm was unable to tell the Gazette how many staff may be impacted, declining to confirm reports that 350 could be at risk.
The firm said today the reorganisation follows an extensive global strategic review. A consultation with employees in the London office will begin at the end of October.
Several City firms have cut support roles in recent months including Ince & Co, Ashurst and Hogan Lovells. The Baker McKenzie consultation could yield by far the biggest number of job losses however as it includes staff from around the firm’s international offices.
According to the firm, the consultation will eventually result in 'new roles and opportunities’ being created in existing service centres in Manila, Belfast and soon-to-be-announced service centres in North and Latin America.
In a statement, the firm said: ‘We will be sharing more information about our shared service centres, when we announce these shortly.’ This is expected to include the size of the offices and what types of roles will be advertised.
Jason Marty, global chief operating officer, said: ‘As the first truly global law firm, our professional & business services function has grown organically over time and in line with changing client needs. Ensuring that we continue to deliver the best client service globally however, depends on having a more modern and agile [professional and business service] function which most effectively supports the business and its practices, and which is aligned with the future needs of the firm.’
He added, ‘We will be working closely with our [business service] teams to ensure they are fully supported throughout.’