Progression and opportunity

Why make a move?

Making a career move is sometimes a decision that is not of your own making or it may be the fruition of many months of careful planning. Whatever point you are at in your career it is always good to have an up to date CV and also an idea about what opportunities and salaries exist in the legal market just in case you suddenly find yourself having to make a move. Reasons for considering making a move could include:

Relocation – if you don’t know the region then talk to a recruiter who covers that location or may be able to refer you to somebody who covers the region.

Salary – talk to a recruiter to determine what is a fair salary for your pqe. Don’t just make a move to earn more money, once you’ve moved further uplifts in your salary may not be forthcoming and salary can be a huge demotivator.

Retraining – you may wish to change specialism but make sure you have exhausted that possibility at your current firm. Also talk to a recruiter about how realistic that is to make the change of discipline.

Progression – you may have reached a point at your current firm where there is nowhere for you to progress to. Ensure you make a move to a firm that is able to offer progression and you are clear about what you have to complete in order to achieve progression. A recruiter should be able to assist you in putting together a business plan for more senior appointments.

Lack of investment – your current firm may not be looking to invest in your training or the further development of your area of law. Ensure that you join a firm that is committed to your on-going development and also will support you in investing in further resources to take things forward.

Change of scenery – simple though it sounds sometimes people want to experience working life outside of the firm they trained with. It can be the chance to lose the ‘trainee baggage’ and start at a new firm with a clean slate and at a perceived level of experience and standing.

Redundancy – this is the time to talk to a recruiter, network with your colleagues and ex colleagues and put together a structured plan to find your next role.

Overview - there will be other reasons for considering making a career move and one of the main points to have explored is to ensure that you are not ‘jumping out of the frying pan in to the fire!’ You do need to research amongst your own contacts and also with your recruiter prior to attending for interview so that you have all pertinent information and can talk around or question further at interview if appropriate. There will be times in your career when you will have to move in order to progress and by switching firms you can learn a great deal about different cultures and be introduced to new and diverse clients. Also take on board though that you will be largely untested at your new firm. Therefore there is usually a bedding-in period where you have to relearn the ropes and personalities within a firm, which can sometimes hold back your progression. So be clear about why you are looking or having to make a move.

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