The ‘who’ and ‘how’ of legal recruitment: a guide for NQs

When coming up to qualification, many trainee solicitors we work with face a number of issues – often around the ‘when’, ‘why’, ‘who’ and ‘how’ of starting to work with a legal recruiter on planning their career.


We’ve already discussed some of the ‘when’ and the ‘why’ of using a specialist recruitment service to find the ideal NQ solicitor job – if you’re interested in those topics, we’d suggest taking a look at our last blog post for some advice. Today on the NQ blog we look into the ‘who’ and ‘how’ of legal recruitment – how to find your ideal partner to guide you through the process, and how to get the very best out of working with them.



This is crucial. You should speak to peers and colleagues to find out which consultants they’ve worked with, who has worked well for them, and who hasn’t. Conduct thorough research on LinkedIn: which recruiters are actually based in the region you’re hoping to secure a role in? Have placed candidates been kind enough to write a recommendation of this consultant’s work on their behalf?

The importance of research and planning before you start your search can’t be underestimated: every year we hear any number of horror stories from candidates who, for example, have had their details submitted without their consent, have been told that they’ve been submitted for a role when they haven’t, or who have felt pushed into applying for newly qualified roles that haven’t been a good fit for them. A good consultant will tailor what opportunities they contact you about to suit the brief they’ve taken from you. You should never work with a recruiter who makes you feel rushed or pressured into applying for a role.



The more time you spend getting to know the person who will be representing you in the legal market in terms of your search, the better. Taking a truly consultative approach on your behalf means that a legal recruiter will want to get to understand you as a candidate, what you are looking for, and what your perfect role will look like. This should never be a rushed or last minute process.

Your working relationship with a legal recruitment consultant is important. It’s imperative that you’re able to work together comfortably, that you trust your consultant’s professional advice, and that you have an open and honest dialogue with each other. If you feel that an opportunity your consultant has put you forward for isn’t right, tell them: it will help them to tailor future approaches for you. If your job search brief changes during the CV send and interview process, tell your recruiter and explain why: it will help your consultant understand and seek more suitable options for you.


If you’d like a confidential discussion regarding your search for a newly qualified role in 2017, we’d be more than happy to help. Visit our Contact page to get in touch with one of the consultants at Florit Brooke, or sign up for our NQ mailing list.

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