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Research Librarian - Herbert Smith Freehills

Contract typeFixed-term
Hours9.30am - 5.30 pm
Closing date26 June 2016
Contact nameSowande Coker
Recruitment Manager
CompanyHerbert Smith Freehills LLP

Role / Primary Responsibilities:

  • The main function of Knowledge and Research is to support the legal and business information needs of partners and solicitors of the firm. This team of highly experienced information professionals is led by the Knowledge and Research Manager, UK and currently has 12 permanent staff.
  • Knowledge and Research manages an extensive range of online and hard copy legal and business information resources and an internal knowledge management database, underpinning the firm’s wide-ranging expertise and business development strategies. Besides providing research services, Knowledge and Research has a proactive role in the promotion of new technologies, with a particular emphasis on supporting an increasingly mobile firm.  Knowledge and Research provides education, training and support for trainees and new solicitors.  In conjunction with the Learning and Development Group, Knowledge and Research is also actively involved in running one of the elements of the Trainees Professional Skills Course.
  • The standard hours for this role will be 9.30am – 5.30 pm, but some flexibility may be required.

Key Performance Indicators:

  • Reference requests and complex research are completed on time and to the satisfaction of the user
  • Positive feedback from users and other members of the Knowledge Management team
  • Increased use of resources
  • Demonstrated ability to work within policies and guidelines and to contribute to the attainment of Knowledge Centre goals as set by the Knowledge Centre Manager
  • Contribution to national and integrated Knowledge Management solutions and to implementation of the firm’s Knowledge Management strategy

Key Responsibilities:

Senior Research Librarians

In addition to a high level of expertise, Senior Research Librarians will be required to demonstrate strong leadership skills, lead teams effectively and work proactively as a team to ensure optimal Knowledge and Research performance.

The Senior Research Librarians will be required to contribute to strategic initiatives, work towards common agreed outcomes and goals and assume functional and formal management leadership as determined by the management team.

Research Services

  • Use a wide range of printed and online resources to complete simple and complex research tasks.
  • Assist end users to develop their own research strategies using print and electronic resources
  • Contribute to the development and maintenance of policies and procedures and promote research services
  • Provide reports on online usage trends and research requests to identify research trends and specific practice group needs


  • Deliver training to a range of fee-earners and trainees
  • Development of training programmes and session plans, creation of training guides, course outlines and other training resources
  • Identify training needs within the firm, assist with promotion and contribute to the development of learning programs that incorporate and utilise new technologies.

Collection Development and management

  • Assist with the day-to-day maintenance of online resources and identify strategies to assist with promotion of resources, new resources and system upgrades.
  • Liaise with fee-earners  and suppliers to resolve technical, content or access issues with these resources
  • Participate in trials of new online resources, and contribute to evaluation and comparison of available online resources at renewal or as requested.
  • Assist with the selection, acquisition and cataloguing of new resources for London and international offices using our library management system.
  • Report on usage, feedback, new and redundant subject areas and analyse reports to regularly weed the collections, ensure that the collections continue to meet the needs of the firm.
  • Participate in the overall management of Knowledge and Research collections, facilities and spaces. This includes archiving, superseded text retention, cancellation, online services promotion, binding and looseleaf service updating.

Library management systems

  • Maintenance and development of our library management system,
  • Contribute to processes and procedures to support the collection management activities of the group
  • Generate and analyse reports on our collections and usage
  • Responsible for the quality control of the catalogue and the process improvement of practices that support cataloguing


  • Contribute to procurement processes that encompass: Negotiating contracts, financial reporting, organisation of details, evaluation of products, providing feedback, maintaining relationships with vendors and promotion of resources,
  • Provide recommendations for purchasing new titles based on trends and feedback

Knowledge Management and Intranet

  • Contribution to the management of the internal know-how databases. Including liaising with IT regarding technical issues and development of the database, managing the content review process
  • Responsibility for the design, creation, checking and updating of many of our intranet/Knowledge Hub pages


  • Contribution to development activities for the team
  • Development of areas of expertise within other team members

Additional duties

  • Representing Knowledge and Research at appropriate meetings
  • Assisting other team members, participation in meetings and contributing to Knowledge and Research projects and initiatives
  • Contribute to Knowledge and Research projects as requested.
  • Knowledge sharing

Qualifications / Skills / Experience:

  • Postgraduate/graduate qualification in Library/Information Studies (or equivalent)
  • A minimum of 2 years' experience in library & information work.
  • Demonstrated expertise in legal and/or business information resources
  • Demonstrate a competent level of ability in the delivery of training
  • Intermediate Word and Excel skills
  • Confident research skills
  • Experience of managing internal know-how
  • Experience of using SharePoint and automated library management systems
  • Basic financial management experience desirable

To Apply:

Candidates can apply for the role on either via our website ot LinkedIn

About Us:

With nearly 5,000 staff, including 2,800 lawyers, Herbert Smith Freehills is one of the largest, fully-integrated law firms in the world and is the leading firm in Asia Pacific.

We advise many of the largest and most ambitious organisations across all major regions of the world. Our reputation for providing outstanding legal expertise is thoroughly deserved: we are globally pre-eminent in all forms of dispute resolution and an international leader in corporate and finance. We are one of the world's top-ranked energy and resources firms. We offer our clients a top-tier capability across a single global platform with a distinctive focus on industry sectors and an un-paralleled depth of expertise.

Join us, and you will work with inspiring people, many of whom are leaders in their fields. You will be faced with demanding and intellectually stimulating work that will require more than just technical ability. You will need to have a sense of the bigger picture, the ability to cut to the heart of the matter and a gift for developing exceptional working relationships. With more than 20 offices across the globe in fast-growing markets like China, Indonesia and Russia and established centres like the UK, Europe, the US and Australia, we can offer you the international opportunities that only a leading global practice can provide.

We recognise that the success of our business and our clients relies on the skills, knowledge and ideas of all our people. Our environment is one in which high performance is expected, in return, we will provide you with rewards and opportunities tailored to your personal and professional goals.

Corporate Responsibility is a key element of Herbert Smith Freehills' strategy, made up of pro-bono advice and research, local community initiatives and efforts to promote environmental sustainability.

The Office:

London: Located in the heart of the City of London, our Exchange Square offices give us easy access not only to our clients but also to many of the social and cultural attractions of one of the world's most exciting cities.


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