Rachael North, director, on the London in-house market

What have been the main trends/ developments in the London in-house market over the past 12 months?
Throughout 2014 companies across the board have demonstrated a strong interest and desire to save costs and cease to rely on expensive external counsel. As a result, they’re choosing to invest in growing and developing their expertise in-house.

What have been the real growth areas and where has the demand been coming from?
A major growth area has been the increasing use of the Cloud and as a result, data privacy. This means that regulations are becoming ever more complex in today’s changing IT landscape. It is expected that this trend will continue going forward. Corporate governance has continued to tighten as regulatory regimes across all industry sectors continue to tighten.

European legislation is constantly pushing boundaries and it is difficult to talk about English law and roles purely focused on the UK market. Happily, borders have continued to be broken down and internationally qualified and experienced lawyers, with fluency in at least one other language, besides English, are frequently the first in line for some of the choicest roles available.

What have been the key stories that have dominated the in-house market?
The main observation to make is that 2014’s focus was on growth, albeit cautious, rather than survival, as compared to the previous year.

What are your predictions for the London in-house market for 2015?
Expect to see more opportunities with an international flavour.

How would you sum up 2014 in one sentence?
We look forward to seeing a colourful legal landscape in 2015, with a variety of international opportunities being thrown up across most industry sectors in house.