Legal Recruitment from Ten-Percent Legal

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Training Contract Applications

22.03.07 If I am looking for a training contract, how many firms should I be applying to for work?

Potential trainee solicitors often worry that they are either applying for too many training contracts or too few. It is one area that people seek assurance on. This is how we deal with it: firstly we ask what degree classification the person has - if you have a 2.1 or 1st and went to a good university (I could write another article on the latter!) with good A levels, a consistent academic background and a bit of work experience in a legal setting, you will probably find you do not need to apply much further than the big London firms and regional practices who advertise everywhere and anywhere, and you obtain interviews fairly rapidly for a good guess. So the answer here would be probably a first wave of about 10, followed by more if required.

If you got a 2.2, or have an inconsistent background, perhaps as a mature student, and dont really fit into the standard requirements of the larger practices or commercial firms, you will probably have to widen the net - if you set on trying for the Magic Circle and commercial firms, you may have to do over 50 just to get one interview if that. If you are open minded about where you should be looking, you will also make a load of applications to high street firms. It is not unusual for someone with a 2.2 or 3rd to perhaps make over 100 applications, and if they are looking in the wrong place to then wonder why no interviews have been forthcoming.
You have to be aware of who you are, where you are looking to end up, and what you have that a firm will be wanting. If you do not have sufficient skills or background to offer, chances are some or all of your applications will be a complete waste of time. Careers advisers are good to discuss things with (if they are geared up to it and know their "stuff").

Jonathan Fagan, MD of Ten-Percent Legal Recruitment - no.1 online UK legal recruitment agency - save time, skip the legal job boards and let us do the work - register online at

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