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For partners at some law firms last Christmas came early and the festive season has not ended. At long last law firms have gained control of their most important asset – their people. No longer do recruitment partners and human resources professionals live in fear that another mid-ranking transactional assistant will charge through the door holding the department to ransom for yet another salary rise. One corporate partner was allegedly asked by his junior what bonus would be on offer this year for fee earners. He replied: “We are contemplating paying assistants their salaries.” Is the war for talent over – did the law firm and employer win?

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