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  • Posted: Nov 12, 2021
    Deadline: Not specified
  • Absa Bank Limited (Absa) is a wholly owned subsidiary of Barclays Africa Group Limited. Absa offers personal and business banking, credit cards, corporate and investment banking, wealth and investment management as well as bancassurance. Barclays Africa Group Limited is 62.3% owned by Barclays Bank PLC and is listed on the JSE Limited. The Group is one of A...
    Read more about this company


    Senior Legal Counsel - Commercial Legal

    Job Summary

    Responsible for identifying and managing legal risk for the South African and African business. Key point of contact on a day-to-day basis for the business team, and responsible for providing pro-active legal advice, support and risk management.

    Job Description

    Accountability:  Negotiate, draft and review Agreements

    • Ensure agreements are drafted as quickly and efficiently as possible while protecting the Bank and mitigating risks.

    • Attend to queries as quickly as possible.

    • Successful conclusion of agreements, taken into account how certain clauses would impact the Bank' strategy.

    • Consider, comment, negotiate and give advice on commercial agreements and schedules.

    • Assist in structuring, negotiating and drafting commercial agreements and schedules relating to standard agreements, technology agreements and related transactions.

    • Address all probable risks by seeing to it that they are sufficiently mitigated in the agreements drafted.

    • Conduct legal due diligences on transactions.

    Accountability:  Advisory and opinions

    • Delivering excellent and effective legal advice and service to stakeholders, applying strategic thinking with advice given.

    • Ensure technical correctness of agreements drafted by ensuring that the latest legal requirements have been included in the agreement.

    • Staying up to date with all relevant laws, case law and regulatory directives and guidance, this is done by doing regular research on legal developments and attending training interventions.

    • Ensure that all risks are sufficiently addressed in agreements entered by the Bank, understanding the requirements of business, legal issues and possible business risks and incorporating clauses in the agreements to address such risks and requirements.

    • At all times ensure that sufficient legal knowledge has been obtained and updated with latest legal developments to ensure that they are correctly reflected in the agreements drafted.

    Accountability:  Management of Legal Risks

    • Proactive updating of templates and identification of clauses for continuous improvement. 

    • Ensure effective and appropriate verbal and written communication of the legal policies to internal clients.

    • Proactive monitoring of compliance of the legal risk control framework.

    • Adhere to Absa frameworks, policies and procedures applicable to the role, demonstrating sound judgement and responsible risk management and when required highlight breaches and request dispensations & waivers on a timely basis.

    • Report all risk events/incidents/issues immediately upon discovery and escalate significant events/incidents/issues using the defined process for the business area.

    • Understand why risk events/incidents/issues happened and identify how to prevent them in future - focusing on fixing root causes and taking ownership of identified actions

    Accountability:  Stakeholder Management

    • Build relationships with key senior stakeholders within the legal and business functions across the Bank and become a trusted advisor.

    • Timeous, appropriate and collegiate engagement and collaboration with Legal colleagues from other teams, particularly where matters are business facing or are related to another area of expertise (e.g. employment law).

    • Timeous and proactive escalation of issues to manager (technical, stakeholder related and where matters have been open for more than 3 months), blocking out contract review time with manager sufficiently in advance so as to avoid urgency and delays.

    • Timeous and accurate matters reporting, providing adequate detail and drafted in a manner that can be easily copied into a General Counsel report Explain legal concepts, clauses in agreements and risks to internal clients.

    • Provide training that is beneficial / informative to internal clients by way of presentations, such as training on new legislation or recent legal precedents.

    • Manage external counsel were applicable.

    • Familiarisation with the Bank’ internal governance. 

    Accountability:  General

    • Proactive stakeholder management and raising the profile of the team.

    • Identify instances where contract automation can be implemented to ensure efficiency.

    • Deal leadership – ability and experience in leading large and complex deals.

    • Develop and maintain a network with senior stakeholders by encouraging informal interactions and catch-up sessions to achieve good visibility and raise the profile of the team.

    • Perform duties in line with the Absa values and uphold Absa’ values in transacting with stakeholders, customers and colleagues.

    • Provide more than is required from stakeholders to ensure efficiency and excellence.

    • Be an active and accountable member of the team by participating in initiatives and workstreams across the Legal function.

    • Timeous conclusion of all mandatory training.

    • Coach and mentor junior team members.

    Professional/technical experience

    • At least 5-8 years’ PQE in the field of commercial legal.

    • Ability to advise at a senior business level and establish credibility with senior stakeholders.

    • Experience in drafting and negotiating outsourcing agreements and/or technology agreements is preferred.

    Academic and professional qualifications

    • Appropriate Law degree.

    • Admitted attorney in RSA.

    • Degree from a leading educational institution with good academic results.

    Personal attributes

    • Ability to work autonomously and as part of a team.

    • Very strong interpersonal skills.

    • Communication skills.

    • Well organised and efficient.

    • Excellent negotiating and influencing skills.

    • Integrity and reliability.

    • Excellent attention to detail.

    • Commercial acumen.

    • Business awareness, prioritisation of risk and strong commercial focus.

    • Ability to manage a large (and often fluid) workload with effective prioritisation as well as deliver under pressure and at speed.


    Bachelor Honours Degree: Law (Required)

    Absa Bank Limited is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer. In compliance with the Employment Equity Act 55 of 1998, preference will be given to suitable candidates from designated groups whose appointments will contribute towards achievement of equitable demographic representation of our workforce profile and add to the diversity of the Bank.

    Absa Bank Limited reserves the right not to make an appointment to the post as advertised

    Method of Application

    Interested and qualified? Go to Absa on to apply

    Note: Never pay for any training, certificate, assessment, or testing to the recruiter.

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