NQs face dole queue as retention rates drop

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  • What exactly are these 'corporate advisory roles in the financial sector' that Mark Allsup recommends for NQs who can't find a job?

    I would have thought corporate advisory roles would be affected just as much as NQ roles and even if they were not, NQs would not be considered viable candidates for them.

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  • The situation is even bleaker in the Scottish market. Firms here are announcing some truly disturbing numbers:
    McGrigors - 50%
    Dundas & Wilson - 45%
    Maclay Murray Spens - 10%(!)
    I imagine some of the English regions might also be seeing figures worse still than London. There's a very strong feeling brewing among 2009 qualifiers (rightly or wrongly) that the City is 'looking after its own' to the detriment of perfectly competent and promising young lawyers who happen to be working in other offices.

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  • "It’s really tough because there are less jobs and those who are qualifying are ­working for less money...". Anyone who doesn't understand that there are "fewer jobs", not "less jobs", shouldn't be allowed to qualify anyway. I certainly wouldn't let that NQ draft a memo for me.

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  • Some commentators ability to comes across as ridiculous pedants is quite remarkable. Well done, it must feel good to belittle people.

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  • I must agree with the above comment. The pathetic individual who sent that comment in (at 5.46am no less) is clearly very sad.

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  • While I agree that the 5.46am comment is sad, it does serve as a reminder to those, like me, who are yet to secure a TC, the level of accuracy and eye for detail all recruiters expect in these especially competitive times.

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  • He or she should get a life!!! Getting back to the point 'less jobs' doesn't mean no jobs so good luck to all of those back on the market!

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  • I am afraid you may consider the comment pathetic but he/she does have a point.....illiterate and sloppy NQs are working whereas promising NQs are being left by the side. It is all about luck and timing, not who and what you are. Now is the opportunity however for NQs to discover that there is more to life out there than City law firms, which, no matter what anyone says, are in most cases highly overated... Good luck.

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  • Anon at 7.50 makes a good point - while things are very bleak indeed for NQ's who have worked so hard and really want to stay in the profession, there is something to be said for viewing this as a chance to try something different. Forcing a few young lawyers out of their comfort zones may prove to be a good thing in the long run.

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  • Do you think this will also be the situation for NQs in 2010 and 2011 (i.e. the ones recruited pre-recession)?

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  • BLP is still a week and a half away from telling its trainees whether they have a job at the end of August. To add to the already rather late process, they decided to interview all trainees and string the interview process out over two weeks. Ridiculous!

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  • What do you mean 'pre-recession'?

    Anyone qualifying in 2010 and 2011 is likely to have been recruited in 2008-2009, during the recession.

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  • I am (hopefully) due to qualify in 2012 and the retention rate at my firm this year is set to be pretty low from what I gather.
    I hope that the prospects of being retained or at least switching firms are far more positive in three years time. After the hassle of obtaining a TC, it would be nice to relax, look forward to a prosperous legal career and start to plan ahead long-term instead of always worrying about the end of the next two year cycle.
    Frankly, the fact that newly qualified lawyers are still considered fledgling and most are not secure in their career path when in their mid-to-late twenties is pretty damning. At this age, people should have garnered significant experience, should display confidence in their futures and should be able to start thinking of purchasing their first home, starting a family etc.

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  • Trainees and lawyers have really got to snap out of the law firm mentality and understand they are not schools, colleges, jobcentres....they are businesses. As much as they say in the recruitment brochures that they will gush all over you, when push comes to shove, they wouldnt bat an eyelid. The truth of the matter is their clients are now bust, merged or state owned. Time to think afresh, and say goodbye to the fat smelly whisky drinking partner who's been sat in the office doing the same thing over the last 10 years. My advice to NQ's is to move on. Set up a business. Some of you will make it. When you do, you'll have your boss-that-never-was drooling over you, whilst you can quite happily poo on his face, and let him it eat it. I do that with my lawyers.

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  • From the article - "One magic circle NQ said: “I think the class of 2009 have had it really bad. It’s really tough because there are less jobs and those who are qualifying are ­working for less money; and on top of that there are far fewer career opportunities for those not kept on.”
    Poor grammar; it's 'fewer jobs' not 'less' and the NQ is not even consistent, going on to say (correctly) 'fewer career opportunities.'
    These things get noticed in the workplace.

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  • @ Graham 3.25pm - that's already been pointed out and commented on by another pedantic so and so. Would have thought somebody with such a superiority complex would have noticed. Those in glass houses etc.

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  • ‘whatever happens in the next one or two years, the world economy will double over the next 20 years.’ Gordon Brown

    I suspect that the job market for those fortunate enough to be qualifying in 2012, 2013 or 2014 will be very different from the job market today.

    (and I knows that my grammars is bad, so leaves it alone, alright!)

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  • I'll make one thing clear to the Gen Y moaners. If you believe that insisting on correct grammar makes one a pedant, then don't be a lawyer. Too many people are content to let standards slip, then complain that they aren't being given a chance, or things are too hard. There is nothing more important than getting the basics right, and those of you who think otherwise should go and do something else and stop being passive-aggressive about the standards justifiably imposed on lawyers. If you can't even write English, you have no business in the profession, and even less if you can't take the fact that mistakes of that nature are unacceptable in any circumstance for a solicitor.

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  • To the poster at 3:20 a.m. above:
    Your failure to use a relative clause in your second sentence, between "or" and "things" and excessively long sentences run counter to your pontificating.
    p.s. Don't you have anything better to do at 3.20 a.m. than to chastise others' grammar and spelling?

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  • p.p.s. And now you can have a gleeful moment that I said "second", rather than "third" sentence. Go on, you know you want to...

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  • I agree with the 9.45 am post above. The complaint at 3.20 a.m. uses sentences which rely on punctuation for their meaning and are excessively long. As a consumer of legal services this style of lawyering is one of my pet hates.

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  • Ohh stop already!! Yes the point about bad grammar from previous posters has been made, and made again and again.....zzzzzzzzzzzzz!!! No wonder lawyers are considered so boring.

    Getting back to the main issue - For those of you who did receive an NQ offer, what did you do differently to your colleagues who did not receive any offers?

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  • To Anon yesterday @ 7:00 pm. Gordon Brown is speculating that the emerging economies, particularly China and India, will continue to grow. The idea that the world economy will double in size is based on projected population increases, and the belied that the economy will grow with the population. It's dangerous to assume that this kind of growth will necessarily be good for British business however, and particularly that it will be good for English law firms. We've already seen a growth in outsourcing legal services to India, and I suspect we will see more.

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  • 9.45am: you're right. Touché.

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  • If your written English is cr*p, don't become a solicitor.
    Pithy enough?

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  • Anonymous, the less/fewer distinction is a tiresome and pointless piece of pedantry, and it is on its way out, like many pedantries before it. There is nothing that pedants can do to stop this natural and desirable process.

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  • The less/fewer obsession is nothing to do with "standards", Both words are equally clear, and the "rule" deeming one to be correct and the other to be incorrect is arbitrary and pointless. The English language will lose no clarity or flexibility when this rule expires, as it will. Pretty much all the people who care about this point are older than me, and I am thirty-seven next month.

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  • Loving the pedantry. All of you who don't have NQ positions to look forward to can at least take comfort in the fact that if you do manage to break out of the law the chances are the will be less (so shoot me) tossers like these in your life.

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  • Re 'less' and 'fewer': Sorry but applicants really need to get their heads around that sort of thing. Lawyers must express themselves as precisely as possible for various reasons.

    It is unfortunate for you if you weren't taught much about grammar at school, but you should consider it crucial to make up any gaps in your knowledge.

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  • Instead of attempting to justify your pathetic need to feel superior to others by quibbling about grammar, would all of you like to consider what you would have felt had you been a trainee qualifying in one of the worst recessions? Not only do many of them not have jobs to go to in September, but they have no hope of getting any. For some, they will be the lost generation, unable to qualify into a profession which has effectively thrown them on the scrapheap (in many cases with substantial debts) before they have had a chance to demonstrate their potential.

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  • ignore these 'grammar' idiots - they are the ones getting squeezed out for being crap.

    there will be fewer and less of them in the years ahead (thank gawd)

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  • Anonymous of 1.40pm - I don't think you get squeezed out for having good grammar.

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  • Anonymous @ 1:40 pm - your point is rubbish.

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  • Those poor NQs need help and support, not ridicule.

    I think that these firms should offer support groups and therapy workshops like:

    Using a Knife and Fork - Unlocking the Code;

    Coping with Daylight - A Beginner's Guide

    Chin Transplants - Cosmetic Surgery for getting on in the Real World

    Spinal Implants - Believe the Hype

    Poor babies!

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  • I AM NOT A LAWYER, HOWEVER A VERY CLOSE FAMILY MEMBER ISABOUT TO FINISH A TWO YEAR TRAINEESHIP, WITH NO JOB. SHE HAS STUDIED 4YEARS HONOURS, 1 YEAR POST GRAD LEGAL CERT, TWO YEAR TRAINEESHIP AND FOR WHAT THE DOLE. OW SAD! i AGREE i THINK THE BIG COMPANIES FORGET ABOUT THEIR nq'S FROM THEIR BRANCH OFFICES E.G. SCOTLAND

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  • ‘whatever happens in the next one or two years, the world economy will double over the next 20 years.’ Gordon Brown

    I suspect that the job market for those fortunate enough to be qualifying in 2012, 2013 or 2014 will be very different from the job market today.

    To Anonyomous at 2:12pm. Tell her to do a two year placement with Voluntary Service Overseas. There will never be enough English teachers in the developing world. She can get an abundance of life experience, particularly cross-cultural and international experience, which will stand her in very good stead when the market turns around.

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  • Astonishing.

    Regarding the pedantry - whilst you're all correct that accuracy is important, may I just remind you that this is *only* a comments board! Most contributors type a quick paragraph or two during their working day (myself included, I hasten to add) so who gives a hoot if an off-the-cuff anonymous comment is not absolutely correct? There is no editing feature, and I'm sure all our employers would prefer we get on with the paid work. It's not like many people put their name to their submission anway. In this context, it's just not important.

    Besides, if a petty criticism concerning grammar is the absolute best response you can come up with, then I'm not sure you're fit to be a lawyer either. Pointing out someone else's faults without actually addressing their point is deeply unimaginative and not at all clever.

    Even though this has all been incredibly amusing to read, for the love of all that's holy just grow up. In the internet age, if you take insignificant comments boards (of which there are many) this seriously, I suggest you find a new soothing hobby and step away from the computer.

    @ Metallica - what to do if you don't get offered an NQ position? go out and find another. They won't beat a path to your door. Be prepared to move, be prepared to be flexible about which area of law you qualify into, and be prepared to leap out of your comfort zone. If you've invested thousands on your education, it'd be daft not putting in the effort to see it through. I'm glad I did just that, It was tense and unpleasant for a while, but with a bit of hard work I got the better end of the deal.

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  • Mature NQ, I think you've missed the point. I imagine that most posters DIDN'T take this message board seriously and were just having a laugh*. Unfortunately (for you - not us), your post has "bear trap fodder" written all over it...

    (*The definition of "a laugh" may vary from person to person)

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  • p.s. - Your use of a split infinitive in your final paragraph was unacceptable.

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  • I qualified, moved out of London, got a great job in a regional firm and get home by 6pm every night! Can't believe people still want to work in law factories at all hours of the night and day! There's more to life.

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  • When I qualified in northern ireland during the last recession, there were not many jobs going. So I joined the army, serving in Afghanistan. Whilst I was on duty, my wife died and I was severely incapacitated within a month of each other. I came to terms with it, moved to London and am now 1 year away from qualfying with a magic circle firm. Please get some perspective people.
    Also, I bet most people haven't saved for a rainy day. When my wife died, I came into a rather large inheritance and rather than blow it all on partying, I put away a nice little nest egg for situations just like this!

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  • Indiana Pwns is incorrect, for the larger, commercial firms at least. If you are beginning a TC this September (and due to qualify 2011) you are likely to have been recruited at least one year earlier than your TC start date, sometime two, i.e. in 2007 and 'pre-recession' (just).

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