Team Torque’s highlights from 2020
What a year 2020 has been. There have certainly been some firsts for employment lawyers including the introduction of ‘furlough’, yet it has been rewarding to be able to support our clients as we navigate the challenges the coronavirus pandemic has caused.
Take a look at our top ten highlights below….
Success in the Employment Appeal Tribunal in a long-running whistle-blowing claim that we were first instructed on in June 2017! This is the Firm’s first reported case, and it was great to be on the winning side, along with one of the UK’s most pre-eminent QCs, James Laddie. Hopefully there’ll be many more to come. With a 100% success record in all Employment Tribunal claims that we’ve handled for our clients this year, both in-person and remotely, it’s an area of our practice that looks set to continue to grow.
What the ‘F’ is furlough? 2020 has been a year of firsts and the introduction of the new legal concept of ’furlough’ was a curve ball that no employment lawyer saw coming. Furlough in its various guises has kept us (and plenty of other employment law experts) on our toes for weeks, usually culminating in a ‘head in hands’ moment, late on a Friday night, when the Government has tended to issue swathes of new guidance which we then have to read, digest and give advice on, within 48 hours.
Our first ever virtual client club event – a virtual Q&A over Zoom to 25 clients on the Job Retention Scheme and common issues associated with furlough. Since then we’ve run no less than ten virtual training sessions for clients and contacts over Zoom, learning plenty of new IT skills along the way. These events have been hugely successful, not just in terms of providing our clients with timely solutions to big issues, but also providing them with an invaluable forum to share ideas and experiences with like-minded individuals. We’re definitely converted to the benefits of virtual training courses and events and will be factoring more of these sessions, alongside in-person events, in the calendar for 2021 and beyond.
May / June 2020
Not to be put off by the challenges of inducting, training and managing new recruits in a lockdown, we grew our fee earning and admin teams with the appointment of Tom Watkins, a specialist in the education sector, and Michelle Smith in May and June respectively. Both have settled in really well and have already proven to be fantastic additions to Team Torque.
Marketing workshops with Intandem Communications.
As well as the inspired outputs from these three marketing workshops (who can forget the wolf and the magenta Audi images), they provided us with an invaluable teamworking opportunity and a means to harness the team’s opinions and viewpoints on our marketing strategy. They’ve also been the catalyst for our website refresh under Emma C’s watchful eye. Watch this space!
July & Nov 2020
We’ve rarely all been together as a team this year, but we have managed to squeeze in a couple virtual wine-flight experiences for the team and their partners, expertly compared by Alex and Megan from Pairings Wine Bar in York.
While we may have divided opinions on whether we prefer a Rioja over an Albarino, we’ve discovered that Team Torque is ‘as one’ when it comes to our love for Delice de Bourgogne – there’s no better cheese!
Conclusion of our compliance audit. Whilst not the glitziest of topics, as a regulated law firm, we take our responsibilities to our regulator, the SRA, very seriously. It was a big achievement to be able to sign-off on our compliance audit which we had commenced in March, but which we were only able to complete in September, after 6 months of hard work and dedication during difficult times. A special thanks should go to Tiggy who has worked tirelessly to produce a practice manual, and suite of supporting materials, that we can all be proud of!
29 Oct 2020
The date when we surpassed last year’s fee income for the full year, with 5 full months still to go.
After submitting four rounds of strong submissions, we finally made our mark in the 2021 editions of these prestigious directories, attracting some fantastic client endorsements along the way. It was definitely a champagne moment (pink of course). With three individually ranked solicitors as well (in Emma W, Tig and Tom), these rankings are an important independent endorsement of the firm’s unrivalled expertise for employment law in North Yorkshire.
Forget furlough, this month all we’re talking about is Strictly!
From our Friday morning teasers to the Monday morning de-brief, the entire team is invested (well, perhaps, some more than others) in this year’s Strictly competition.
It’s anyone’s guess as to who will win this year’s Strictly sweepstake but, having picked Bill out of the hat and been a little disappointed, Tiggy’s the one who’s smiling now!
We are incredibly grateful for all of the support we have received this year and we are already excitedly looking ahead to next year!
We wish you all a very happy new year.