Demand for in-house lawyers rockets

Vacancies for legal jobs increased by 40 per cent last year, according to a new report.

Business intelligence company Vacancysoft analysed 9,900 vacancies recorded at legal employers in 2014-15.

It found that Bristol, Birmingham, and Manchester were the busiest cities outside London for legal recruitment.

Overall, Bristol had the most vacancies during the course of 2015 – a total of 284. However, Birmingham was the faster-growing. It saw a 28 per cent increase in vacancies in 2015 compared to 2014, with the likes of Pinsent Masons, PwC Legal, Shoosmiths and Browne Jacobson expanding their recruitment in the city.

In London, vacancies at magic circle and US firms rose by 57 per cent, with almost 350 roles on offer across that group. The report singled out Clifford Chance as offering the most additional vacancies of the magic circle in 2015, with its greatest growth coming in banking and finance roles.

Meanwhile, demand for in-house lawyers rocketed by 74 per cent in 2015, with over 1,500 roles advertised. Of these, around 600 were for companies in the financial services sector. Of the big banks, Nationwide, Barclays and RBS Group showed the biggest increase in their hiring. Between the three of them, they offered 95 more vacancies in 2015 than in 2014.