In our Careers Clinic, we hand over to you, our community, to send in a question on career progression.
This month, Principal Consultant Lucy Wickham gives her advice to a solicitor looking for a new opportunity as part of a relocation.
I’m a senior associate planning to relocate from Liverpool to Leeds this year and would like to start my job search. I’m unfamiliar with the market – what advice would you give to someone looking to find the right opportunity in a new city?
In my role as a specialist family law recruiter, I have helped several lawyers secure new opportunities as a part of a relocation. It can be quite an upheaval moving to a new part of the country; if you’re in the process of doing so, there are a few steps you should take to make your job search is a success:
- Think about what you are looking for in your new job. Do you want a lot of flexibility? Are you looking for a pay rise? Would you like to work for a Legal 500 firm? Once you have a clear idea of what you want, it will make your search a lot easier as you can target the firms that will offer you what you’re looking for, whether it’s through an online job search or when working with a recruiter.
- Speak to a specialist recruiter who knows the local market well. At Realm, our consultants each specialize in a specific niche of the market, in terms of practice area and geographic location. For example, I exclusively focus on recruiting family and care lawyers across Yorkshire. With my extensive market knowledge, I can provide you with an overview of the market, and the key players within family law in Leeds, and together, we can explore potential opportunities.
- Research. It’s also worth doing your own research. Check out the local business press for mentions of local firms, such as TheBusinessDesk.com and Insider Media, and look at the Legal 500 and Chambers rankings for your practice area.
- Tap into your network. There may be people you know or within your network who have connections to firms in Leeds that might be useful. If you work for a national firm, you might even be able to stay at your current firm but move to their Yorkshire office.
- Connect with lawyers in Leeds. Look into groups like Leeds Law Society or the local branches of Resolution or STEP (if you are a family or private client lawyer). Joining these groups and attending networking events is a great way of meeting new people and growing your network within the profession, and building a strong network might lead to potential job leads.
- Update your CV. Ensure that your CV, cover letter, and LinkedIn profile are up-to-date and highlight your relevant skills and experiences. Emphasize any transferable skills you’ve gained since you last moved firms, big cases you’ve handled, or skills you’ve developed.
- Visit job boards such as LinkedIn, Indeed, and The Law Gazette to search for job postings in Leeds. Not all opportunities are advertised, but it’s worth setting up job alerts to receive notifications for relevant positions. Be proactive in applying to positions that align with your interests and skills.
Remember, patience and persistence are key during any job search, particularly if you’re moving to a new city. Being proactive and taking the steps above will help to increase your chances of finding the right opportunity. Best of luck with the job search and the move across the Pennines!