National law firm Shoosmiths' well-established Solent office is to enter a new era with the recent appointment of a new head of office who has ambitious designs on growth.
Paula Swain takes over with the of aim expanding Shoosmiths' workforce in the south and exploiting opportunities in the booming southern markets.
The firm has been located in Hampshire for more than 20 years, employing over 100 staff at its Solent Business Park office. It anticipates a surge in requirements for legal support from companies in the region, and is also demonstrating its continued commitment to the region, too.
Paula said: "We see continued and enhanced investment in this region, with infrastructure changes looking to increase this even more. We are excited for the future here, and the opportunities to share our resources with a wider client base."
Paula is a specialist dispute resolution lawyer, and was headhunted by the firm to help grow its litigation offering to clients.
She said: "I chose to join Shoosmiths' Solent office because of the people, the culture and the reputation it has built - I was immediately struck by the excellence surrounding me. The partners I work alongside are driven, collegiate, and extremely talented. They are immensely important in achieving our goals.
"I want to bang our drum louder than ever before, continue to develop and create professional relationships, develop our people and do our bit to support the local economy."
Paula aims to expand the work-force to more than 150 members, while enabling career progression and sustaining career enjoyment, with an even greater emphasis on implementing agile and collaborative working. Solent's workforce currently stands at around 100 team members.
"We are investing in the very latest innovations in agile and collaborative working. I also want to continue building on our excellent culture for the benefit of our staff and our clients. Happy teams help deliver the best client satisfaction. I am keen to speak with in-house lawyers considering a move back to private practice so that they can leverage off their sector expertise."
Paula says it is an exciting time for Shoosmiths given that the Hampshire and Southern market is currently thriving.
"We are one of the very few national law firms to have a long established business located in the area already offering a range of legal services, including one of the strongest corporate teams in the country, top tier real estate and planning teams, a class leading private client team supporting high net worth individuals and family estates, and an award winning debt recovery team to name but a few.
"This perfectly positions us to grow alongside the market, and to think bravely about new sectors and new markets".
Paula succeeds previous head of office Stephen Porter, who is now the firm's national head of corporate.