in Legal Job Market Reports

Legal Job Market Update May 2018


April has been a very busy month, surprisingly busy really because traditionally it is the quietest month in the year after December. However locum and permanent roles are both up and we have seen an increase in demand on the property side – property market seems to be quite active at the moment. In House legal roles have also increased on the locum side – particularly commercial work as opposed to corporate. Zero hours arrangements with fee earners at smaller firms are becoming fairly widespread – ie practices utilising consultants on an as and when basis – and this is markedly different to the job market a few years ago.

May-July is traditionally the busiest recruitment season – locums are starting to get booked up and permanent staff are considering their futures. Apart from the small matter of the World Cup in Russia (when time stands still for 2 weeks) this should be the start of a very busy year.


April 2018 – Summary:
* Permanent vacancies up
* Locum assignments up
* London vacancies: 146
* South East: 366
* South West: 93
* Midlands: 50
* North West: 85
* North East: 55
* Wales: 21

Statistics for April (March in brackets)
Current live vacancies: 818 (852)
New permanent vacancies added in April: 52 (30)
New locum vacancies added in April: 54 (32)
New candidates registering: 45 (54)
Average ‘Job Strength Factor’ for new vacancies: 3.6 (Good)

TP Legal Recruitment publishes the number of new vacancies, new candidates and indicate the increase or decrease from the previous month. We aim to assist the legal profession by showing the market from our perspective. Our clients tend to be high street law firms and smaller sized commercial practices.
The average job strength gives a good indication of the market because:
1. A poor Job Strength on vacancies indicates a struggling market. When trade is bad, employers seek options for increasing turnover which involve sourcing candidates with their own following and no salary.
2. A strong Job Strength on vacancies indicates a buoyant market, particularly if it is in connection with an increase in numbers of new vacancies.
Vacancies are each graded 1-5, with 5 being a very strong vacancy and 1 being a very weak vacancy.


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