Students doubt recovery of NQ prospects

Just over 10 per cent of Lawyer2B readers believe that the newly-qualified (NQ) market will recover soon, according to this week’s poll.

Only 11 per cent of readers think that the market will have recovered by the time they qualify. The majority of readers are concerned that the NQ market is shrinking.

Nearly two-thirds (60 per cent) of readers believe that no matter where they are in their education or training, market shrinkage is a bad sign. Just over a quarter, 29 per cent, are apathetic about the market as they are resigned to the fact that it will not recover quickly because of the recession.

Last week, one prominent legal recruiter stated that top firms’ demand for NQs had decreased. Paul Turner, director of Garfield Robbins Legal Recruitment, said:Last year, the perception was that more NQs were kept on and for those that weren’t there were more NQ jobs available.

“This year, if anything, we are perhaps seeing fewer NQ roles than we were a year ago and it looks as though we have lower retention rates than a year ago. We are also seeing a little less demand than we were a year ago from those top [20 to 30] firms.”

He added: “We are seeing a bit of tacking going on. Firms are looking at what is front of them and making adjustments.”

However he also noted: “I can certainly recall a time five years ago prior to the downturn when retention rates were almost 100 per cent. But I can also recall a time two or three years ago where retention rates were down at 50 or 60 per cent with some firms far lower than that.”

See Lawyer2B’s further analysis of this year’s NQ market here.