NQ market remains tough as candidates leave London to find work

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  • You make it sound like working outside of London is the death of someone's career. There are some fantastic firms that do a lot of good work outside of London, and not working in the capital can have its advantages. This whole article has a very patronising undercurrent.

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  • Hi K,

    The story's not meant to patronise or denigrate small/regional firms, but rather report on a real trend that's been noticed by recruiters. And it acknowledges the fact that after two years of gruelling work, leaving (not by choice) your home and friends to work at a firm with a very different atmosphere for a lot less money is tough.

  • I think the article reflects an accurate picture of the current state of the NQ market. I can see why K felt that the emphasis on people leaving london to look for work, does give the impression, that it's London or nothing, however that said I do think it's just a fact, more than a patronizing tone.

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  • God forbid somone might have to work in Oxford. I mean OXFORD, how ghastly! It must be at least an hour and a half from the City. One may as well go and work in Scotland!

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  • Doing a law degree (or any degree for that matter) is very expensive these days. I'm not sure it's worthwhile if one ends up in a dead end job at a high street firm.

    It's an interesting article in the sense that it highlights the saturation in the market for NQ's. Too often the focus is on the saturation of law students.

    Hopefully the message will filter down and the numbers will self correct. There has to be a point where most students assess the risk as too high. Not sure where that point of inflection will be. May be further rises in the cost of the LPC rises and university tuition fees will do the trick. Who knows.

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  • It might well be a real trend, but I think that misses the point somewhat. While it might not be ideal, what about a comment on the trends that recruiters have noticed outside of London as well, just as a cursory acknowledgement of life outside the M25. There must be a recruitment market outside of London for NQs that doesn't just involve the high street or tiny little firms in Kent, after all. Notsomuch of a coup for those small firms either, by the way, unless their photocopier keeps breaking down, in which case those city NQs will be a real boon. For the record, I live in Zone 2 and work in the City (I'm excellent at photocopying), I just happen to hail from outside the M25.

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  • Interesting - as someone giving advice and coaching to law students, I see their understandable focus on landing the training contract as the holy grail, with little consideration to what happens on qualification. The better candidates (with more chance of getting a TC) will look at retention rates, but very few go beyond that. We get quite a few queries about the prospects for going in the other direction, from a small firm to post-qual jobs in larger/City firms.

    If the message of the NQ market realities is going to get through, it needs to be at undergraduate level and ideally even earlier. But having worked with both of those client groups, I'd have to say the chances are very slim. If any of you find yourself attending events with or mentoring such students, I'd heartily recommend it as an opportunity to (tactfully) get the message across as something to think about.

    Apart from anything else, a candidate who has done their research to this level when applying for TCs is going to look like a much better prepared candidate who has really done their homework.

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  • I do think that the article comes across as London or nothing. Living and working away from London does not mean the end of the world.
    I am dismayed with those who regulate the profession for allowing an influx of students to apply for an LPC at various institutions. The medical profession has managed to cull the number of applications they accept then why is not the same for law. There are not enough jobs and it's disheartening to see that the profession has done nothing to limit the number of solicitors which qualify every year. It's such a waste of money, time and effort to qualify when everyone is competing for a handful of jobs.

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