Legal Job Market Report – December 2022
in Legal Job Market Reports

Legal Job Market Report – December 2022

Here is our summary of the current state of the legal job market:

Locum Recruitment – Quiet
As we have gone through December I am glad to say that our locum department is enjoying a bit of a quiet period after 18 months of non-stop work! Although as I type this we have taken new two assignments, so perhaps the lull is ending. Conveyancing work has now dropped off – a recent remote working role has attracted 20+ enquiries, which is a complete change and possibly a sign of the quiet property market to come in the New Year.

Locum assignment updates here:

Permanent Recruitment – Quiet
Permanent roles have dropped off in December, although it remained busy in November. The number of new solicitors registering with us has declined from 42 last month to 24 this month. It is quite normal to see less registrations in December, but not so dramatic a reduction. We suspect a lot of candidates are staying firmly put whilst they wait for more stability in the market.

Vacancies can be viewed here:

Law Firms for Sale – Quiet
As we approach the end of the year there are still enquiries, but the number of active buyers has dropped. It will again pick up in the new year as ever. There are a number of new law firm listings about to go live – keep an eye on our website listings.

Full list of firms for sale at For valuations, exit planning or a confidential discussion about a potential sale or acquisition generally please ring 01824 780937 and speak to Jonathan Fagan or email

Ten Percent Group statistics for November 2022 (October 2022 in brackets)

New contract roles added – 33 (16)
New permanent roles added – 22 (22)
New candidates added – 24 (42)

KPMG & REC Report on Jobs UK November 2022

Permanent placements fall, temp billings expand modestly
Softest increase in vacancies for 21 months
Pay pressures ease slightly amid softer drop in staff supply

Commentary from Claire Warnes, Head of Education, Skills and Productivity at KPMG UK
“Of particular note this month is the softer rise in permanent starters’ salaries, with the rate of pay inflation easing to a 19-month low in November. This reflects the combined effects of employers reining in recruitment, candidate availability continuing to decline, and workers staying put for job security. So despite the cost of living pressures that households
are enduring and the industrial relations impasse within many sectors, wage growth may well be trending down in the months ahead.”

Commentary from Neil Carberry, REC CEO
“This month’s data emphasises that while employers are moderately more cautious in the
face of economic uncertainty, this is not yet a major slowdown in hiring. While permanent recruitment activity has dropped from the very high levels of earlier in the year, the pace of that drop has tempered this month. In contrast, temporary hiring has accelerated again in the run-up to Christmas. There are clearly some seasonal factors at work here, with retail and
healthcare recruitment leading the way. But there may also be some switching to temporary going on, as firms maintain flexibility ahead of next year. As the economic outlook weakens, we can expect to see falls from historic highs across our measures, but it is notable that pay and vacancies are still growing, although at a much lower rate. A flatter period in the labour market is inevitable in this current economic climate, but demand is being supported by some major underlying factors, including labour shortages and technological change.”

Jonathan Fagan

Jonathan Fagan LLM FIRP is Managing Director of Ten-Percent Legal Recruitment. He has been recruiting solicitors and legal support staff for law firms and in house legal departments for over 20 years and handles roles from junior fee earners through to partners and law firm sales/purchases. A non-practising solicitor on the Roll since 2000, he is also the author of a number of legal career books, which are available at You can contact Jonathan at