Tips for trainees approaching qualification

In light of the current market, we are likely to see some changes from the traditional route to qualification. Here are our tops tips for trainees.

​In light of the current market, we are likely to see some changes from the traditional route to qualification.

COVID-19 has certainly thrown some spanners in the works for law firms, and with the unknown timeline of restrictions is likely to raise concerns. Remember in 2019, when the Government was in flux? Back then we had suspicions of trainees being left without options on qualification, however this did not turn out to be the case as retention rates rose to an all-time high – so there is hope for the ‘next generation’ yet!

Typically, law firms will be on the cusp of their internal hiring process with opportunities being revealed, choices being made, and interviews being lined up. If you are a trainee in your final seat then now is the time to start making some important career decisions, and here are some useful tips to help you do so.

1. Keep Calm & Carry On!

Qualifying is a big milestone, and likely something you have been working towards for several years, so do not let the pressure get to you. The key is to remain focused and not lose sight of your end goal, whether that be a particular practice area, law firm or industry.

2. Pros & Cons of Staying Put

Competition has always been fierce, and in some markets extremely so which is ultimately out of your control. In some cases, the stars align; the perfect opportunity presents itself within the firm you trained with – lucky you! For those less fortunate, it is no bad thing to move onto pastures new or opt for a second-choice practice area with a view of moving on at a later date. Given the current climate, having a job is far more favourable than having no job, so it’s more important than ever that you explore all opportunities internally, even if second or third choice.

3. Safety First!

There are multiple platforms often giving the illusion they are making life simple for you; upload your CV, click ‘OK’ and we will find you the job of your dreams. However, this can cause you to lose control of your destiny and in some cases end up with your CV in a ‘spray and pray’ universe. Be certain you know exactly where you are applying to and what the opportunity is. Communication and research are essential, find a trusted agency, a credible consultant you feel comfortable working with and understands your goals before providing consent to make specific applications.

4. Basic Trust

It can be challenging to find an agency and individual in this seemingly ever-expanding industry, so it is important you find the time to do your own due diligence. It is always worth speaking with your peers to see if they can offer any recommendations. In addition to that, a simple ‘stalk’ online can unveil how long that agency, and individual, have been in the field as well as LinkedIn showcasing testimonials. Ultimately, if that recruiter can provide you with valuable market insights, guidance of your CV and interview processes and you feel confident they understand your goals then you are off to a good start! Personally, the cherry on top is if you genuinely gel well and have a nice chat over a call or coffee.

To find out more about what is happening in the trainee market, or for a confidential discussion to learn more about your options, don’t hesitate to reach out to me atlouiseshearing@hydrogengroup.com.

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Posted almost 4 years ago
About the author:
Louise Shearing

Our blogs and insights help keep you up to date with market developments and regional news