Getting value out of your legal recruiter

By Barney Gibson, Consultant at Sellick Partnership

Are you looking for a new legal job but struggling to find a role that matches you and your skills? You might want to consider utilising a specialist legal recruiter. Barney Gibson, specialist legal recruiter at Sellick Partnership offers his thoughts as to why legal candidates should work with a recruitment partner and gives his advice on how to get the very best value out of them.

I often hear legal candidates speak about a negative experience they have had with a recruiter. Some candidates also decide not to work with a recruiter simply because of something they have heard. This is a shame, and I feel like lots of legal candidates are missing out on the advice and opportunities working with a recruitment consultant can bring. I think a lot of the time, candidates feel they have had a bad experience because they were not prepared and did not know how to work with and get the best value out of their legal recruiter. In response to this I thought I would go through my top tips for making the relationship between you and your next legal recruiter valuable, and offer my thoughts as to why I think more legal candidates should utilise our expertise when looking for their next legal job opportunity.

Moving jobs isn’t always that easy: this is true for most job hunters in today’s market. The legal market is saturated with talented candidates and jobs all over the country, so finding a role that fits your skillset, and securing it, can be very difficult. Fitting in a job search around your working day, as you can imagine and as some of you know, can be very time consuming! That is where a legal recruiter can help. We match the best talent to the most suitable roles every day and will be able to work on your behalf to find the right vacancies for you. When looking for a recruiter it is important to find one that recruits within your area of expertise and that takes a genuine interest in you and your needs.

Be honest and a recruiter will work hard on your behalf: it is hugely important to be honest with your recruiter from the offset. Have a detailed conversation with them about your experience, skills and what you are looking for at the beginning of your job search. Remember to specify the things that are most important to you and also tell them aspects of a role you would not enjoy. This way the recruiter will know exactly what you are looking for and be able to actively search for suitable roles on your behalf. Some people have different needs to others, however, honesty is the best policy!

Our market knowledge is up-to-date, so use it: working with legal firms and candidates on a daily basis means that we are able to keep up-to-date with the market which can be hugely beneficial. This is true for both the legal sector and the recruitment market. You should therefore utilise this knowledge as much as possible. Think about asking your recruiter what is topical at the minute, ask them questions about the recruitment market and the types of roles that are available and seek advice on what you should be talking about during your interview. This could give you insights your competition is unaware of and give you the upper hand when it comes to securing your dream role.

We have strong relationships with organisations in your chosen sector: when choosing your legal recruiter, pick one that is experienced in your market. That way you can be assured they will have already built up relationships with firms you may be interested in working for. Remember, if there is a particular firm you are interested in, let your recruiter know and they will be able to contact the organisation on your behalf and give you more of an insight to how they operate and what they look out for. Legal recruiters also have access to roles that may not be advertised on the open market, so it can pay off to be registered with a specialist agency that will be able to contact you when a suitable role becomes available.

We can handle tricky aspects of job hunting such as salary negotiation: negotiating a salary can be awkward, especially if you are trying to get more money than was originally offered. Your legal recruiter will be able to manage this whole process easily and ensure you get the best rate.

As for our commission? This gets billed on top of whatever you earn so we will not take a penny of what you receive.

We can offer free advice throughout your career: recruiters are highly experienced in everything from CV and interview advice to building your personal brand, so utilise their knowledge as much as possible. Think about what you need to ensure you can build a successful career and speak to your legal recruiter and ask what they can do to help. Generally most recruiters like Sellick Partnership will have a wealth of resources available to candidates like you.

Finally, a good legal recruiter should not just leave you as soon as you have accepted an offer. At Sellick Partnership we ensure we keep in regular contact with our candidates, and are always on hand should they need any help or assistance throughout their career.

If you are interested in working with a recruitment partner you can trust, please feel free to give myself or our legal recruitment team a call.

Alternatively you can visit the Legal 500 jobs page or the Sellick Partnership website for our latest live vacancies.

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