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Giving as good as you get

Allen & Overy Pro Bono/Comms Affairs Officer Emma Turnbull  shares why the Employers' Membership Scheme is a core part of employees’ development.

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The Employers' Membership Scheme is a Holy Grail  for me in terms of employee engagement.

A broader perspective

I’ve been a trustee for 10 years and I wanted to encourage and inspire others at Allen & Overy. I’m currently a trustee for a legal advice centre. The nature of the law profession is that lawyers can work in a very insular way.  I know from experience that being a trustee broadens horizons and allows you to look outwards.  


Working as trustees outside the firm gives our lawyers, and others in the company,  the chance to take on a different, broader perspective. It means that our employees can relate more closely to the communities with whom we work. They can use their skills but in a different way outside their everyday work.

Clapping Audience

High performance culture

Allen & Overy has a high performance culture and the Employers' Membership Scheme allows us to connect skills and development.


We have run volunteering programmes previously but the challenge has been converting the volunteering into skills development. Now we recognise people’s trustee work through the appraisal system and it’s all taken into account when we assess promotions and bonuses. 


This means as an employee you’re not just giving back you’re getting back. The Employers’ Membership Scheme is a holy grail for me in terms of employee development. The feedback that we get from employees who have undertaken the Charity Board Leadership Programme as part of the scheme is wonderful. There is a degree of time commitment but our employees always emphasise how much they’ve gained from it.

Fantastic engagement

The ease with which I can get engagement with Getting on Board also fills me with confidence. I know what you provide is brilliant. I can go to the partners and be an advocate and have confidence in the service we’re getting. I’ve embedded it  into partnership work  with our clients and I want to see how we can develop more. 


I love what you guys  do. I wish more businesses would do something similar!

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