Prioritising During Your Legal Job Search

Posted on 12/7/2018 by Katherine Memery

Before you make any kind of job move, it’s important to be clear about exactly what you’re looking for in your next position. If you know that you want to move on from your current role, it’s likely that there will be one overriding reason for this. While everyone is different and no two people’s lists of priorities of the same, generally, lawyers move for one of the following reasons:

  • For better pay
  • For better progression prospects
  • For a more complex caseload
  • To relocate for personal reasons
  • Because they want a different job title
  • For a better work-life balance

At the beginning of your job search, you should think about what things are important to you and what exactly you’re looking for from next position.

If you’re struggling to identify or clearly articulate what it is you’re looking for, think about what’s missing from your current role. Do you wish your employer invested more in your development and offered clearer routes of progression? Are you looking for a more varied caseload or a higher salary? Would you ideally like to work flexibly or be able to work from home occasionally?

Once you’ve made a note of your requirements, think about which of these are non-negotiable and which you’d be willing to compromise on. You can then adopt a strategic, targeted approach to finding a new position.

Speak to your consultant

When you’ve determined what your top priorities are, it’s essential that you let your recruitment consultant know what they are. Fully inform them of what would work for you and what’s fixed on your wish list. They will be able to advise whether your expectations are realistic, given the nature of the market and the kinds of roles currently on offer.

This discussion should help you to sharpen your focus. You could find that your recruiter suggests that you’re being unreasonable in your expectations. While you might be tempted to discount their input, try to take their advice on-board as they’re actually likely to have your best interests in mind.

At Realm, we’ll always be open and honest with you about whether your wish list is realistic. By informing you of what’s currently on offer and the kinds of things employers are open to discussing, you’ll have a better understanding of what you should be aiming for.

Equally, if you’re struggling to work out whether your caseload or commute is most important to you, your consultant can act on as a valuable sounding board who can help you organise your priorities.

No matter if you’re clear about what you want or not sure what you’re looking for in a new role, make sure you do your due diligence properly, both on your recruiter and the state of the market.

Why is it important to get your priorities straight?

In the current climate, law firms might take their time to come to a decision following an interview. It can often be a long-winded process, which can be frustrating for candidates. However, once a firm makes an offer, they tend to expect an answer relatively promptly (within a few days).

It’s important that you assess the firms you’ve applied to and straighten your priorities in advance of you receiving any offers. Taking this pragmatic approach at the outset will save time in the long-run for all parties and help to avoid an unduly long process.

Getting advice from your consultant will help you to get a firm grasp on what you’re willing to compromise on. This will ultimately put you in a stronger position that will allow you to jump on a strong role quickly and say yes when the offer comes your way.

At the same time, when your consultant is fully informed of your main requirements, they will be able to adopt a more strategic, targeted approach to matching you with the law firms that will be able to meet them. Together, we can be more productive and efficient in your job search.

A refreshingly consultative approach to recruitment

At Realm, we’ll work closely with you to develop your legal career, providing advice and guidance to help you get to where you want to be.

For a confidential discussion about the state of the market or to talk about making a move, get in touch with us today. Call our legal recruitment consultants on 03300 245 606 or visit our jobs page to see our latest legal vacancies in private client, personal injury and family law.


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