Senior Employment Solicitor

YESS is a not-for-profit organisation whose charitable objectives are to promote and assist in the resolution of workplace disputes without litigation.

We are looking for an experienced solicitor to work with us (employed position) on our expanding case load. We advise clients across all income brackets and sectors including many senior executives. We are widely renowned for our constructive and non-confrontational approach to resolving employment disputes.

Approximately 20% of our work is grant funded, benefiting clients on low or no income. The remainder comes from privately paying clients, most of whom are employees. We operate a cross-subsidy fee model, charging private clients according to the means of the client. This provides a varied and interesting client group.

Our work is fast-paced and very rewarding. Working with us offers a genuine opportunity to make a difference to the lives of employees who might not otherwise have access to advice.

Overview of role

  1. To provide legal advice and support primarily to employee clients. Clients are given detailed advice on their legal position but with a focus on practical solutions to resolve employment disputes and avoid litigation.
  • To support clients to resolve their situation without litigation. This may include coaching them to negotiate with their employer, or by engaging directly with employers/employer representatives on their behalf. To support clients to prepare for and attend judicial or private mediations. To advise on settlement agreements and COT3s, which will typically be a mix of routine settlement agreements and more complex settlement negotiations where clients will not necessarily be leaving employment.
  • To carry out necessary administrative tasks using Microsoft 365 and Teams and other cloud-based systems. This includes completing new client enquiry forms, preparing advice letters, attendance notes and other documents, preparing documents for electronic signature, maintaining accurate time records and other general enquiry and case management.
  • To promote YESS to potential clients, via social media, blog writing and attending meetings and other events (some of which may be outside of office hours).
  • To keep up to date with developments in employment law, to undertake appropriate professional development training and maintain an SRA-compliant CPD record.
  • To comply with all regulatory requirements including those determined by the SRA and the Charity Commission.

More about working at YESS

The team

We are a small, friendly team consisting of the CEO, 4 senior solicitors and 3 support staff. There are no individual revenue targets, everyone contributes to securing the income we need to operate effectively.

Administrative support is provided for file opening, appointment-making and invoicing, but solicitors do all their own typing and case management including time recording and attendance notes.

Your caseload

All solicitors provide initial consultations to new enquirers, where we spend 20-25 minutes understanding the issues and providing advice where possible. In many cases, the enquirer may need urgent assistance. At busy times, each solicitor may take several of these a day, alongside existing client work.

Your ongoing caseload will primarily be a mix of junior and senior employee clients, supporting them to achieve resolution of their employment issues through constructive discussions with their employer. This can occur at all stages of an employment relationship, from those who want to stay employed but resolve the issue at hand, to those who wish to negotiate an exit or who may already be involved in tribunal proceedings. The work is fast-paced – most of our matters are concluded within days or weeks. Employer work may form approximately 10% of the overall caseload if the successful candidate has relevant experience.

Although we never litigate, you will need to advise clients on time limits and Early Conciliation and explain how Employment Tribunals work so that clients understand their options when considering resolution. This may involve behind the scenes coaching, or direct engagement with the employer depending on the circumstances.

We regularly support clients in judicial mediations (which is the only involvement we have with the employment tribunal process). In London this work is funded by Trust for London. Outside London this work is currently privately paying or pro bono.

Requirements of the role

Essential knowledge and experience

  • Excellent knowledge of employment law and experience of its practical application, in particular pregnancy, maternity and parental rights, discrimination, redundancy, unfair dismissal, and whistleblowing.
  • An ability to work quickly and mostly unsupervised and manage priorities, client expectations and deadlines independently.
  • The ability to assess a client’s situation quickly and pragmatically and provide immediate practical and constructive solutions.
  • The ability to advise on the financial value of a claim alongside all other aspects of settlement negotiations.
  • Experience of advising senior employees on negotiated exits that include elements such as pension payments, ongoing health care, share options etc. and providing appropriately for these in settlement documentation.
  • Willingness to advise clients from varied backgrounds, across all sectors and income brackets with empathy as well as expertise.
  • Willingness to use multiple cloud-based systems to perform client and administrative tasks and communicate with colleagues.
  • The ability to work remotely and self-sufficiently as part of a small, committed team.

Candidates must be qualified (England and Wales) to sign off settlement agreements as many of our clients resolve their matters in this way.

Desirable experience

  • Experience of advising employers on day-to-day employment matters would be an advantage as between 10-20% of our work is for employers.
  • Experience of conducting disciplinary and grievance investigations as an independent investigator would be an advantage as we are often engaged to do this work on the recommendation of other firms.
  • Experience of mediation (either as a mediator or supporting clients attending judicial or private mediations) would be an advantage as this is a growing area for YESS.
  • Business development and networking experience would be an advantage as much of our work comes via referral from other solicitors.

Essential qualities

  • You will be compassionate and empathetic, adapting your approach depending on the situation each client faces.
  • You will be able to assimilate background information swiftly, and be able to switch between multiple matters, whilst remaining calm under pressure. Excellent personal organisation is needed to manage the volume and rapid turnover of casework.
  • You must be comfortable negotiating with clients’ employers and their advisers by telephone. Our high success rates depend in large part on our willingness to establish a constructive dialogue with opponents.
  • You will be down-to-earth and approachable, capable of putting clients of all backgrounds at their ease and working closely with the rest of the YESS team to achieve our charitable objectives.

We can offer you

A friendly and supportive working environment. There are no individual revenue targets, we all pull together to get the work done. There is no general expectation to work more than contracted hours (although this is occasionally necessary as in any professional practice).

Flexibility. The role may be 0.8 FTE to full time (28-35 hours per week) on a negotiable pattern, depending on the wishes of the successful candidate and the needs of YESS.

YESS operates hybrid working. Ideally one or two days a week would be spent in our offices in London (Somerset House), however this is negotiable. It is possible to carry out this role almost entirely from home (with scheduled visits to the office) anywhere in England/Wales, as long as you have a reliable broadband connection and good mobile signal. A laptop, extended desktop, printer and mobile phone will be provided.

We encourage the sharing of knowledge and experience within the team and access to professional resources will be provided. We are members of ELA and ILS so there are regular training and networking opportunities.

We are committed to building a diverse workforce to ensure we are effective at meeting our clients’ needs.

Salary and benefits

Salary £45,000-£48,000 (pro-rata) dependent on experience.

Discretionary bonus dependent on organisational performance.

6 weeks’ holiday plus public holidays


Applications by CV and covering letter submitted below or email

Closing date 7th June 2024.

First interviews by video call, provisionally between 13th– 19th June.

Second interviews in London, by subsequent arrangement, likely to be the week of 24th June.

Job Category: Solicitor
Job Type: Full Time
Job Location: Hybrid

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