Graduate program

See what our graduates have to say about launching a career at Sparke Helmore

Why choose Sparke Helmore?

Sparke Helmore offers graduates a challenging and rewarding way to kick start their legal career.

Working at Sparke Helmore provides all employees with a unique range of opportunities to expand their knowledge, with access to:

  • Market-leading expertise—we are a full service national law firm. This means you will have the opportunity to gain experience in each of our Insurance, Government, Workplace and Corporate & Commercial practice groups.
  • Real legal work—from your first day, you will have the opportunity to get involved in legal work that contributes to the firm and its clients.
  • Training and development—a combination of formal and on-the-job training that covers technical and soft skills.
  • Mentoring and networking—we have a proud reputation for mentoring and facilitating relationship building across the firm in a way that fosters personal and career development, networking and the sharing of knowledge, experience and learning.
  • Opportunities to give back—through our Pro Bono and Community Programs.

What do we look for in our graduates?

Our people are key to our success. We are always on the look-out for graduates with potential to progress, who fit with our culture and align with our values, and who demonstrate, among other things, intelligence, interpersonal skills, commitment, energy and commerciality.

Sparke Helmore graduates are:

  • all-rounders, who are engaged in extra-curricular pursuits as well as their studies
  • team players
  • clear and concise writers, and 
  • confident and articulate communicators.

What can you expect as a graduate at Sparke Helmore?

The first year of practising law can be daunting. Our graduates follow a program designed to guide you through the experience, providing you with comprehensive training and mentoring as well as networking opportunities.

The program includes specialised soft skill training to equip you with the tools and knowledge you need to become a capable and well-rounded practitioner. The training covers areas such as time management, business development and firm finances. You will also get to work on high quality, complex matters with leading legal practitioners from your first day.

Our graduates also have access to the firm's mentoring program, which pairs you with a senior lawyer in another practice group, to give you a broader understanding of the firm and its other practice areas.

What past graduates have to say

"Orientation was a great way to mix with the grads in the other offices and get a feel for some of their experiences. I particularly enjoyed the address from Phillip Salem, the National Managing Partner, who spoke to us about his experiences in the legal industry. Culture is something that is somewhat determined by people in senior positions and filters down the chain. I think it says a lot about a firm's culture when someone from such a senior position takes time out of their day to chat to the newest members of the firm."

            Inshani Ward, Government Lawyer, Melbourne

"I have been working as a graduate at Sparke Helmore since December 2016 and during my first three months with the firm I have been made to feel part of the team, and have received invaluable guidance and mentoring from Senior Associates and Partners. Orientation was very helpful as it introduced me to the office systems and integrated technologies which have assisted me with everyday tasks. I was given the information and tools I needed to be confident and well informed when I started."

            Samuel Montague, Law Graduate, Corporate and Commercial, Newcastle

How to become a graduate at Sparke Helmore

Graduate positions are available in all nine of Sparke Helmore’s offices, however the rotational program is currently only available in Sydney. Therefore, most graduates are recruited into a specific practice group but with our continued growth and expansion, we hope to be able to provide additional rotational programs in other offices in the near future.

Sydney—rotational program

Recruitment for our rotational program is run in conjunction with the Law Society of NSW timetable (between March and June of the year before commencement).

The rotational program consists of two six-month rotations. Successful graduates will have the opportunity to:

  • try different areas of law before specialising
  • get real and meaningful experience working on matters
  • learn valuable skills from different lawyers and practice groups
  • develop and learn with manageable billing targets
  • build networks and contacts, and
  • receive mentoring and coaching from leading practitioners.


Due to COVID-19, all firms participating in the current LegalVitae program have agreed to amend the key dates for the 2020 graduate program, please see below:

Key Dates for 2020

Date Activity
Monday 2 March Applications for graduate positions open.
Sunday 12 April Applications for graduate positions close at 5:00pm.
Monday 13 July Interviews for graduate positions commence.
Friday 14 August Offers for graduate positions can be made.
Friday 21 August Offers for graduate positions must be accepted or declined by 5:00pm.

Virtual Careers Fair - Friday 3 April 2020, 11am – 2pm

Sparke Helmore is excited to be taking part in this year’s Virtual Sydney Law Careers Fair 2020.  For more information please click here

Other offices

We recruit graduates directly into practice groups across all of our other offices as needed. Please visit the Current Opportunities section of our website to find out about graduate positions available.