The Commute: CRA’s London office is based in the City of London, which is a very small city and county in East London that is recognised as a major business and financial centre throughout Europe. Given this, a lot of the staff in the London office live in East London, although others live in North, South, and West London, and a few commute in from counties such as Essex and Kent. In short, people come from all over the place. I personally live in Greenwich, a town in South East London, which boasts the best view in the city (see right), and is famously the centre of the world (0° longitude).
Lunch spots: CRA’s London office is conveniently located near a wide variety of lunch spots, including large chains such as Pret a Manger, Itsu, and Wasabi. There are also a number of upmarket restaurants nearby, for occasions when a more formal lunch is required. Furthermore, Spitalfields market is within walking distance. This is a covered market with a large selection of restaurants and cafés, and many nice areas to sit, which allow for a comfortable lunch outdoors on the rare occasions when the weather is nice and you can afford to have a slightly longer lunch than normal.
Dress code: I’m honestly not 100% sure what the dress code is in the London office, but the oxymoron business casual probably best describes it. On the male side: some members of staff wear suits without ties, some wear white or green chinos, and everyone else falls somewhere in between. It’s similar for women except there are more blazers and blouses and dresses (and ballerinas, which is a term that apparently doesn’t just refer to the principal female dancer of a ballet company). Most members of staff dress slightly less smartly on Fridays, and all dress considerably more smartly when meeting clients or otherwise attending external meetings.
Social outings: Social outings mainly consist of going to the pub on Thursdays or Fridays. We drink a fairly small range of beverages, much like some of the characters in the UK version of The Office (“Me, lager. Finchy, lager. Gareth, lager, sometimes cider. So different drinks for different… Needs.”). Common topics of conversation include the weather, Premier League football, and recent developments in merger control. Occasionally, we venture beyond the office or the pub across the road. For instance, the Antitrust & Competition Economics Practice recently went on a clay pigeon shooting trip.
“Try & Hire” internship experience at CRA Zurich amid the COVID-19 pandemic
José Bila is an associate in the Life Sciences Practice based in Zurich. He joined CRA in June 2020 as part of the Swiss “Try & Hire” program, where...