HR Business Partner - 12 Month FTC

Location: United Kingdom
Office: Birmingham
Discipline: Human resources
Contact name: Ben Porter

Contact email: [email protected]
Contact phone: 07587481088
Vacancy reference: 022249
Closing date: 13 October 2023

Full time, 12-month fixed term contract – Maternity cover, Birmingham

This is a fantastic opportunity to join a busy, fast-paced and well-respected HR team. Based in the Birmingham office this role reports to the Senior HR Manager and is supported by a HR Assistant. In this role, you will provide full generalist HR service to the firms Birmingham, Manchester, Leeds and Oxford offices. As well as working collaboratively with the other HR team members across the firm to lead the way in HR initiatives.

The person

This is a busy and challenging role and, to be successful, your background will include strong HR business partnering, most likely within a professional services environment, where your knowledge and experience will have included the full life cycles of the employee from recruitment through to leaving. We use PeopleXD as our HR system for personnel, payroll and recruitment as well as a high number of other external platforms, so you should be comfortable in navigating around those.  

You will be supporting the firms Birmingham, Manchester, Leeds and Oxford offices, which is over 560 staff and partners. As a firm we are now working on a hybrid arrangement, you will need the ability to deal effectively, quickly and accurately with a high volume and variety of work, often with conflicting deadlines. 

More specifically, you will be able to demonstrate the following:

  • CIPD Level 5
  • Solid HR experience, with a good knowledge of Excel and accurate data management
  • Ability to turn work around quickly, without compromising on quality
  • A keen eye for the detail
  • Comfortable and able to manage multiple tasks at any one time, as well as ensuring your clients are kept updated as to progress
  • Robust and resilient
  • Able to influence at all levels
  • An approachable, proactive and professional working style, with a calm and methodical approach to your work
  • You will have a common sense approach to problem solving and be able to explain more complicated matters in a simple and straight forward way either verbally or in writing
  • In addition, you will be a self-starter, willing to take accountability for tasks, have strong communications skills and have an appetite for learning and retaining knowledge

The activities


  • Working closely with the wider HR Operations team to develop and deliver the 2025/2030 Strategy in line with business priorities and core values
  • Partnering with your relevant business function(s); acting as a change agent, providing expert advice and excellent client service on all aspects of HR practice
  • Coaching and building the capability of line managers to anticipate and pre-empt issues, including facilitating the delivery of effective feedback and performance management


Whilst we do have a specialist recruitment function, you will be required to:

  • Take responsibility for the recruitment of some business and legal services vacancies as aligned to your role, with support from the HR Assistant
  • Work with the relevant hiring manager(s) to devise strategies for the recruitment process.  This will include agreeing appropriate sources of candidates and agreeing job descriptions/person specifications and interview structure/questions
  • Ensure a positive candidate experience by appropriately screening and managing expectations through the process using the HR system to support with this.  Where appropriate, be involved in interviewing candidates and managing formal offers
  • Maintain the PSL listing for recruitment agencies for Birmingham, Leeds, Manchester and Oxford and the areas aligned to your role and develop relationships with them to ensure we attract the best quality candidates


  • Assist in the two annual salary review processes for employees including salary research
  • Responsible for the correct and accurate completion of the monthly payroll, adhering to deadlines, with support from the HR Assistant

Management reporting

  • Produce statistical information from the HR system on as requested by employees, line managers, partners or HR colleagues
  • Be a competent user of the HR system in order to produce reports as required

Employee relations

  • Work closely with internal clients, advising and guiding on a wide range of sensitive employee relations issues.  This will involve the provision of disciplinary, grievance, counselling and welfare advice with support as required
  • Assist internal clients with performance management issues and devise appropriate strategies with support as required
  • Manage and monitor sickness absence and the general performance of employees, liaising with line managers as appropriate for long term or absence issues
  • Undertake exit interviews with leavers in order to identify where business improvements can be made
  • Attend regular business service and office meetings providing HR input as appropriate

Additional responsibilities

  • Line manage the HR Assistant and aid their development
  • Take an active interest in all aspects of HR provision across the firm and provide support cross office to other areas of the HR team

Pre-employment screening

Please note that, in the event that we make an offer of employment, we will conduct pre-employment screening that includes checks relating to your professional and academic qualifications, references from previous employers, your eligibility to work in the UK and any disciplinary history recorded with the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA). You will also be required to complete a self-declaration to access your character and suitability.

Disclosure and barring service check

This post is also subject to a satisfactory response from the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) to check for any previous criminal convictions.

The Mills & Reeve Business Services career structure

We have a firm wide Business Services career structure and a published career progression framework.  Within the firm wide career structure there are five career levels.  For the purposes of the framework, this role is at an Advisor level and the role profile that details the outcomes and activities expected of across the firm is included with this job description.  Further information on the firm’s Business Services career structure is available from the HR team.

The firm

What really sets Mills & Reeve apart from other law firms is the way we work with our clients. We understand that clients, in the 21st century, no longer want a traditional law firm – they want one that embraces forward thinking approaches to service, billing, commercial know-how, innovation, people management and community engagement.

And finally

Mills & Reeve is committed to providing an inclusive and supportive working environment.  We are happy to consider flexible working arrangements and endeavour to achieve the right balance for both our people and the business. This attitude to flexible working ensures we continue to provide outstanding service to our clients, whilst allowing our people to develop their careers in the knowledge that personal priorities will remain just that.

Mills & Reeve is committed to promoting equality, diversity and to providing an inclusive and supportive environment.  Please click  here to find further information regarding our diversity policy.

Please visit our  website for further information about Mills & Reeve.