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Shefali Panjwani

Manager, Human Resources

What do you think sets A&O apart? Or What do you think is A&O’s USP?

A&O is a firm that really cares about their employees and is a place where everyone has a voice no matter what role they have. They empower every individual with the right tools to excel in their career.

Tell us about your A&O journey – what initially drew you to A&O?

I spent 5 years working for smaller law firms so when I was approached for the role at A&O I jumped at the chance to work for a magic circle law firm that had an amazing reputation that spoke for itself. My time at A&O has been the best year of my career to date. I've had the chance to work on some challenging and interesting projects as well as getting the opportunity to work with a team of talented and experienced colleagues. It makes such a difference working for a firm that is so friendly and supportive.

How do you balance your career at A&O and your home life?

I like to balance my career and my home life, and at A&O they provide you with the right environment to do this. Informal agile working (iflex) is a great way of being to able to balance both parts of my life, it allows me to be able to focus on my tasks at hand and balance these with any pressing personal commitments. 

If you could switch roles with anyone else in A&O, who’s job would you want and why? 

I have always wondered what it would be like to be a fee-earner and have the chance to work on such high-profile cases. I have supported fee-earners from a HR perspective during my career so I have an understanding of their role but it would be interesting to find out what it would be like working at A&O from another perspective.  

What advice would you give for people considering joining A&O?

Be open to all of the opportunities that are on offer at A&O, whether it's volunteering to work on projects or signing up for training.  I would also encourage anyone joining the firm to use Compass (the firm’s award winning approach to performance management) from the moment they join as it is a great tool to track your progress and to give and receive real-time feedback.

Name something that people may not know about A&O.

A&O is a firm that prides itself on being able to enhance the capabilities of its colleagues to help them achieve professional and personal goals. I have been actively encouraged to attend and participate in internal and external training and development sessions of my choice, which have really helped me enhance and expand my current skillset.

What do you think you have gained both personally and professionally from your time at A&O?

The exposure I have received at A&O working and collaborating with individuals who are at the forefront of their individual fields has made every day a learning experience for me. I have been able to grow in my career and skillset which has directly allowed me to be a more confident individual within my personal life. 

What gets you out of bed in the morning?

Working in HR, no two days are the same. I love coming to work every day as you don't know what the day will bring which keeps me on my toes and keeps things interesting. I am very passionate about HR and I cannot imagine another career choice.