Leaving within the M25 aside, the number of vacancies available each year for in-house lawyers based in the regions is actually relatively small. This means that if you are a lawyer looking for a move into a company in or around say Bristol, Birmingham, Nottingham, Manchester, Leeds or Newcastle you are fairly limited with the number of opportunities that arise in the geographical location. A rough estimate is that, depending on the region, only 50-100 vacancies per annum actually become available. Given that at BCL Legal we are probably representing at least 300 lawyers looking for a move in each of our regions, only a small percentage achieve their aim.
So with this being the situation an open mind as to what you might consider in your in-house role is helpful or possibly even a requirement! It is very hard to help for example ‘the lawyer’ who is looking to relocate from London to Manchester but who only wants to work in-house in a media organisation. Unless the BBC is recruiting there is unlikely to be another opportunity to show to them!
Having said this it does help a recruiter if you do come with some defined goals, ambitions/requirements- call them what you will.
It certainly helps us to help you if you have been able to define some key characteristics of the opportunity that you are looking for. Going back to the title of this blog, the calls I struggle with start “Hi, I’m looking for a move. It can be based anywhere in the Country or even abroad”. My problem with this ‘openness’ is that when matching someone’s ambitions to a role my team and I can speak incredibly confidently that for instance a particular role based in Nottingham is ‘as perfect as you’re going to get’ when taking into account PQE level, location, type of work, team and of course the personality of the job seeker. What I can’t guarantee is that compared to every job vacancy available across the UK, Europe, The Middle East and Asia that this is ‘the one’.
So in summary, be open to new ideas when searching for your in-house role but at the same time give it some parameters!