Andrew Birkin

Andrew Birkin

Head of Formalities

What was your first ever job?  

I worked in the education office at my local council.  

How did you get involved in intellectual property and what first attracted you to the field?  When did you join Potter Clarkson and why? 

I fell into this field somewhat by chance. A temporary role came up at Potter Clarkson shortly after I left university in 1997 and at the time, I was looking to build up my CV with work experience for a reputable, professional services company, so it seemed like a good match.   

I initially joined on a 12 month contract but immediately realised I’d fallen on my feet and had joined a progressive company, surrounded by great colleagues.   

What is your area of speciality and why did you choose it? 

My degree is in business administration so the opportunity to progress into a management role within Potter Clarkson appealed and new opportunities for progression have regularly presented themselves during my time here.   

What does a typical day in your role entail and what do you most enjoy about it/find most challenging? 

I am lucky to have an extremely varied role, where no two days are really the same. I oversee our patent and trade mark formalities teams and so there is a large technical aspect to the role, advising fee earners and clients. I am also involved in training and mentoring our administrators through their industry recognised exams, which can be very rewarding.   

We are a rapidly expanding, forward-thinking company and IP legislation is always changing so no matter how experienced you are, there is always more to learn.   

What has been the highlight of your career at Potter Clarkson so far? 

I have been involved in setting up arrangements that directly save our clients hundreds of thousands of pounds per year and it’s rewarding to find new ways of improving efficiencies and creating cost savings for our clients.  

What advice would you give anyone looking to enter the field? 

Working in IP can be a very rewarding and varied career for an administrator. If you enjoy working in a fast-paced environment and have an eye for detail then there are excellent opportunities for progression.