The Colin Biggers & Paisley Foundation

INCLUSION AND DIVERSITY

OUR GOAL IS TO CREATE A COMPANY AS DIVERSE AS THE WORLD AROUND US

At Colin Biggers & Paisley, we believe in equality and provide all employees with equal opportunities to build and advance their careers. We have a genuine focus on sustainable gender diversity and are continuously working towards improving the number of women in senior roles. Our core values of balance, respect, loyalty and integrity underpin everything we do.

 
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We foster a diverse culture that’s inclusive of gender, religion, disability and sexual orientation. Our staff reflect the variety of races, religions, cultures and social backgrounds that characterise the Australian population. 


 


We believe new ideas stem from diverse perspectives and recognise it's these differences that helps us acquire and retain top talent, build the best teams for our clients and deliver the highest calibre service. Our aim is to be recognised as a leading promoter of inclusion and diversity in the legal profession. We do this by actively promoting equality, diversity and inclusion initiatives.

We've come a long way and recognise that we still have further to go.


 
Equal work deserves equal pay. We've always paid our employees fairly, with no gaps. We continue to monitor our salaries, bonuses and benefits to ensure that we maintain pay equity.

We have six different resource streams: gender, flexibility, age and generation, people with disabilities, LGBTI and cultural. Employees from different facets of our business act as advisors to our inclusion and diversity leadership team in each of these areas.


 
Balance is at the heart of our business.

We focus on excellence without losing sight of balance. We understand that as people go through different phases of life, the amount of time they are able to dedicate to their career can vary. To retain top talent, we adapt to our staff's changing needs. We offer many flexible work arrangements, including part-time work, paid parental leave and non-primary caregiver leave, study leave, carer’s leave and options to work from home. Currently, 26% of our people have some kind of flexible working arrangement. This includes working less than full-time, adjusting core working hours, working from home, or any combination or tailored approach. We stick by our people and support them throughout all phases of life.

In 2017, Colin Biggers & Paisley was awarded the Flex Able certification, an accreditation administered by Diverse City Careers

 
We fight for the fair representation of women. 

Colin Biggers & Paisley is committed to fostering a culture of genuine equality and opportunity for women. We work hard to maximise opportunities for women to succeed and excel in their careers. This means deliberate inclusion initiatives and pay equity for similar roles and performance, regardless of gender.
 
Colin Biggers & Paisley is a signatory to the Advancement of Women Charter, a Law Society of New South Wales initiative. Together, we are committed to promoting diversity, equality, respect and inclusion consistent with the principles of justice, integrity, equity and the pursuit of excellence in the legal profession. 
We take pride in diversity.

Our partnership with Pride in Diversity – Australia's first and only not-for-profit workplace program designed to assist Australian employers with the inclusion of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) employees – provides our practice with support, resources and networking opportunities on all aspects of LGBTI. We are proud of our respectful and supportive practice and will continue to provide a safe and inclusive environment for all of our LGBTI employees. 
 
We celebrate and encourage diversity.

Colin Biggers & Paisley has partnered with CareerTrackers to provide internship opportunities for Indigenous students at university. In 2016, we employed two students from the CareerTrackers program, offering invaluable experience in the legal industry. Hear their stories: 

"I am entering the fifth and final year of my undergraduate double degree in Sports Media/Laws at the University of Canberra. I am a Dunghatti and Biripi, I was born in Newcastle, New South Wales but have spent most of my life in Canberra.

I've spent the past 12 weeks here at Colin Biggers & Paisley interning as part of the CareerTrackers program. The CareerTrackers program is aimed at giving Indigenous students an opportunity to work and gain experience in the private sector. It has partnerships with a number of companies operating in a range of industries within Australia. The aim of the program is to help address the underrepresentation of Indigenous Australians in the private sector by creating pathways to employment.

I started with Colin Biggers & Paisley in their Construction team at the end of November 2016 and I have been surprised by the type of work I have been able to be involved in. Having done two internships at different law firms before coming here I thought I knew what to expect, but the work I have been given here is much more challenging and meaningful than I had ever anticipated. 

I've helped draft complex agreements, researched different industries, prepared internal memos and attended negotiations. In my short time here I've been able to improve on existing skills, but also learn a completely new set of skills that will hold me in good stead when it comes time to graduate.

The team I have worked in has been great. They have made time for me in their busy schedules and worked hard to include me in whatever matters they have been working on.

Working at Colin Biggers & Paisley has given me the chance to work on some massive construction projects and gain experience that I otherwise would not have been able to get. The partners and staff of the team I have worked in have been welcoming and given me access to more challenging work than I could have expected and the experience has laid a foundation for a future in law."


Eamon Ritchie

"Intimidating-- as someone who'd always grown up in little country towns, that was the first impression I had of Colin Biggers & Paisley. For years before I even began studying the law, I was warned that the legal industry was tough and that the people were tougher. So, walking into the Colin Biggers & Paisley offices on the 35th floor to start a ten week internship easily became one of the hardest things I've ever had to do. 

Life changing-- once I'd finished my internship, that's what I realised this experience was. After reflecting on my time here, I came to understand that the knowledge I've gained and the challenges I've had to overcome in this environment will irrevocably contribute to my future ongoing success in this industry. While everyone was right in saying that the legal field was tough, they failed to mention that working in a firm would become one of the most rewarding experiences I've ever had and the skills I've developed I'd be able to utilise every day. Along with this, they failed to mention that the people, while admittedly tough, were also supportive, inspiring and motivating and some would quickly become the people I now aspire to be. 

Overall, because of this experience I now realise that the legal industry is undoubtedly challenging, tiring and, in practise, far more difficult than writing a paper for University. However, at the same time, it's also enlightening, fascinating and overwhelmingly fulfilling. I will forever be grateful for the opportunity to intern here at Colin Biggers & Paisley and learn from incredibly influential industry professionals -especially as such an early phase of my degree." 


Sarah Black