Legal Job Market Report February 2024
in Legal Job Market Reports

Legal Job Market Report February 2024

Here is our summary of the current state of the UK legal job market – for February 2024. We publish these guides monthly via our Legal Recruitment News email newsletter.

Locum Recruitment – Steady

Locum work has started to pick up a bit and we have seen conveyancing locum roles coming back to market after a bit of a break. Law firms are starting to book their summer cover in all departments and locums are getting a little less in number for each assignment coming in. Wills & probate and commercial property have been a bit busier than usual.

Locum assignment updates here:

Permanent Recruitment – Busy

Permanent jobs posted in January were over 50% up on last year – 47 vacancies in a month is a sign of a very healthy market! We have had a wide range of fields of law – corporate commercial, in house, commercial property, corporate immigration, conveyancing and family plus others. Our permanent recruiter team have not had a relaxing January, that’s for sure!

Permanent vacancies can be viewed here:

New Candidate Registrations – 100% increase

Candidate registrations are a very good indicator for market conditions. Increasing numbers of candidates register with us when the market is going down, and drop when the market is on the up. Numbers remain up by about 100% compared with the previous year. New locums have remained high in number, but interestingly we have seen a number of companies have laid off in house counsel just before and after Christmas.

Law Firms for Sale – Busy

Extremely busy – in particular there seems to be a current strong demand for any litigation firms or firms that have no previous conveyancing or private client work covered. I think there may be a lot of misselling work about to crop up. Similarly we are seeing increased interest in retirement sale firms. Good time (although see article below!) to be listing for sale.

Full details of firms currently for sale on our website – list updated daily. 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 January 2024 (2023 figures in brackets)

New locum roles added – 21 (16)
New permanent roles added – 47 (31)
New candidates added – 75 (37)

KPMG & REC Report on Jobs UK – February 2024

Starting salary growth eases amid further rise in staff supply
Sustained and sharp drop in permanent placements
Temp billings fall slightly

Commentary from Jon Holt, CEO of KPMG UK
“”We’re starting the year with the labour market remaining tight overall, though we are seeing the number of job seekers increasing as demand softens. The skills gap is part of this story. All eyes will now be on the Chancellor’s upcoming Budget, and while recruiters and businesses would no doubt welcome any further cuts in payroll tax costs, they will also be hoping for a bit of policy stability during an election year.”

Commentary from Neil Carberry REC CEO
“Pay has normalised, inflation is dropping and the hiring market has been cooling for a year now – it’s high time that the Bank of England starts releasing the brake pedal on our economy.
The Chancellor has the perfect opportunity in the Spring Budget to give some clear signals on growth.”

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