Legal Job Market Report March 2024
in Legal Job Market Reports

Legal Job Market Report March 2024

Legal Job Market Report from Ten Percent Legal Recruitment and Interim Lawyers Locum Recruitment for March 2024.

Here is our summary of the current state of the UK legal job market.

Locum Recruitment – Steady

Locum work is starting to show small increases after quite a dramatic decline over the last 12 months. We are seeing increased numbers of candidates registering with us for consultancy work on an ongoing basis, and a lot of talk of ‘portfolio careers’ – ie taking on a number of consultancy roles and juggling them all at the same time. Conveyancing short term annual leave cover still happening, but in much lower numbers. Other areas tend to be longer term cover or part time, ad hoc ongoing work. Plenty of availability from locums still for the summer.

Locum assignment updates here:

Permanent Recruitment – Busy

Permanent jobs posted in February are still up 33% on the previous year, and interviews, offers & moves are regularly taking place with candidates more likely to move than they were this time last year. We still have a wide range of vacancies coming in for fields of law – corporate commercial, in house, private client, commercial property, conveyancing and family plus others. Our permanent recruiter team remain very busy.

Permanent vacancies can be viewed here:

New Candidate Registrations – 50% 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 50% compared with the previous year. New locums have remained high in number. We are not hearing as much talk of redundancy in the in house market as there was around Christmas..

Law Firms for Sale – Busy

Busy as ever – deals are going through, and still a demand for law firms sold as a shell, particularly limited companies (sole practitioners not as interesting to buyers). Good time to be listing for sale as the market usually stays busy up until August.

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 February 2024 (2023 figures in brackets)

New locum roles added – 16 (17)
New permanent roles added – 30 (21)
New candidates added – 80 (53)

KPMG & REC Report on Jobs UK – February 2024

Staff placements fall again amid ongoing economic uncertainty
Starting salaries and temp wages both increase at slower rates
Candidate supply rises sharply as vacancies drop at faster pace

Commentary from Jon Holt, CEO of KPMG UK
“The impasse between economic uncertainty and hiring decisions continued into February.
Chief Executives tell me they are ready to invest and grow – including taking on new staff – yet the reality is they’re being held back by the prospect of weak demand.”

Commentary from Neil Carberry REC CEO
“As inflation is falling back to target earlier than expected, it’s time to get the focus on growth. This month’s survey shows the market slowing, and a concerning increase in the decline in temporary billings, to the lowest performance since the middle of 2020. Given recent news about GDP dropping, this overall picture is no surprise – but it is certainly still quite resilient by comparison with previous recessions. We know the economy has the potential to create jobs and opportunities – but it can only do that sustainably if we can get economic growth going.”

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