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Director of Risk – Risk Compliance – Firm Wide

Vacancy details

An exciting opportunity for an experienced solicitor to head up our established risk function. You will have particular experience of managing a risk team, providing advice and guidance on setting a risk and compliance strategy and a detailed knowledge of the SRA Regulatory framework. The role involves overall management responsibility for our established risk function which has four units: Risk (including claims and complaints); Information Security & Data Protection; Best Practice and Compliance; and On-boarding (AML/Conflicts), working with our existing “Risk Heads” in the areas of On-boarding, ISDP and Best Practice & Compliance to ensure the firm’s risk strategy is implemented.

Role: Director of Risk
Location: Firm Wide
Hours: Full time
Term: Permanent
Vacancy Reference: 1190-LBL

Who we are

You’ll be joining a national law firm that enjoys a strong reputation, made possible by our exceptional people – each chosen for their industry knowledge and passion for their field. We want to help you to reach your full potential, love the work you do and deliver the best results for your clients. It’s our goal to make you feel great about working with us, and we work hard to cultivate a culture that makes it easy for you to stay with us for many years.

We work flexibly and you’ll be empowered to work where you do your best work, balancing your individual needs with the need for us to engage as teams and deliver excellent client service.

Most of our people choose to work in a hybrid fashion, working from home and attending our offices on occasion. Our offices are in Bristol, Birmingham,  Cardiff, London, Manchester, Southampton, and Taunton.

Day to day, you’ll be successful in this role by:

The Director of Risk reports to the COLP, is a member of firm’s senior management team and attends the firm’s audit and risk committee meetings.

The role brings responsibility for:

Regulatory compliance: Assisting and advising the COLP in ensuring the firm complies with its regulatory requirements.
Management: Managing the overall Risk Team. This will include direct supervision of the work of the risk unit and line management responsibility for the other three units together with the existing heads of those units.
Expert guidance and thought leadership: Providing advice and guidance to the COLP, the senior management team and the Audit and Risk Committee to develop and implement the firm’s risk and compliance strategy.
Reporting to the firm: Report to the Members of the LLP at local office meetings and at Members’ meetings as required.
Accreditations: Ensuring the firm’s accreditations ( eg Lexcel) are renewed
Project/Change Management: be a member of the change management group to ensure that our legal and regulatory requirements are considered as part of change programmes

Professional Negligence Claims & Complaints: Depending on experience, supervising the Claims and Complaints Associate but retaining ultimate responsible for management and active handling of claims against the LLP. Maintain good relations with PII underwriters and brokers and prepare for our annual renewal. If the appointed person does not have such experience, a partner in the firm will take overall responsibility for this part of the role. Responsibility for handling complaints where they are escalated to the Legal Ombudsman.
Audit and Risk Committee: Supporting the COLP in preparation of agendas and supporting papers in line with the Committee’s mandate and annual plan; attend and report to the committee and minute all meetings and follow up on actions.
Policies: Working with the head of Best Practice & Compliance to keep under review the firm’s policies and procedures firm’s retainers, terms of business and email footers to ensure they are reviewed for compliance with the Code.
On-boarding: be a point of contact for the analysts to escalate complex conflicts of interest. Support the learning and development of the conflicts team.
Business Continuity: Be deputy Major Incident Controller and work with the Project Coordinator to plan quarterly testing of the plan. Advise and make recommendations to the ARC in relation to BCP generally.
Information security management: Assist Information Security as necessary to achieve ISO 27001 and sit on the internal Information Security Management Forum.
Data protection: Assist the Data Protection Officer as necessary with SRA and GDPR compliance
Annual Renewals/Applications: support as required the process for renewal of professional indemnity, management liability, cyber and office insurances and the bulk renewal of the firm’s practicing certificates.

Additional responsibilities:

• Manage the overall Risk team on a day-to-day basis. This will involve recruitment and selection, performance reviews, disciplinary action, managing staffing levels within the team and training, seeking the support of HR as appropriate
• Drive forward new projects and initiatives. Maintain high level awareness of risk and compliance issues for the legal profession to inform such projects and initiatives.
• Continuously promote the highest levels of compliance to the partners and staff across the business including delivery of training
• Raise the profile of the role and the risk team internally and externally, being visible and approachable to all members of staff
• Participate in professional groups and networks, in particular the Bristol Risk Management Group

It is an integral part of this role that you comply with information security and all firm policies and procedures.

This role is right for you if:

You will, ideally, have at least 5 years previous experience of working in a risk and compliance role within a law firm.

You will have a robust, meticulous approach to ensuring compliance, combined with a diplomatic, professional and collaborative manner.

A flexible approach and confidence liaising with colleagues across the firm at all levels is essential.

What we can offer you:

A career at Clarke Willmott will feel different to other law firms. We thrive on our individual differences and diversity because as a team, we are united by our shared values and mutual respect. Working with us you will feel empowered, valued and free to be yourself in a safe and supportive environment.

Our mission is to help you realise your full potential whilst maintaining a positive work-life balance. We provide a comprehensive learning and development programme and a range of wellbeing initiatives to support your career journey.

There’s no doubt we expect the best from our people and even the occasional extra mile. In return, your dedication and commitment to the continued success of the firm will be rewarded with a comprehensive range of flexible benefits.

Listen to what a few members of our team have to say about what life here at Clarke Willmott is really like, to see if it’s the right fit for you.


If you would like to apply for this vacancy, please send us your CV and covering letter using the form below.

(If you have any difficulties with the form, you can email your application to us at

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