Manchester NQ Market – a round up. Well, sort of!

July 25, 2019

It is July 25th, 2019, the hottest day of the year so far. Alfresco client meetings, stuffy offices and afternoon dashes to the shop in search of frozen refreshments aren’t the only things taking over the Manchester; we are also fully immersed in “NQ Season”- keeping law firms, trainees and recruiters alike very busy. But what has been happening? Which firms has been recruiting and what areas are proving to be the busiest this year?

Addleshaw Goddard, CMS, Eversheds Sutherland and Gateley PLC have been noticeably active in the market in respect of onboarding NQs. Each firm here has engaged with agencies on at least four NQ positions and even as high as eight in addition to their own internal trainees being offered roles with the potential of more to come as we approach September. In contrast, firms such as Squire Patton Boggs have seemingly managed to retain several of their trainees with them securing NQ roles to start in September with very few of their vacancies making it on to the external market.

Breaking the Manchester NQ legal market down by practice area illustrated some interesting results. Real Estate proved to be very popular, yet again, and evidently still a buoyant area as eight firms used agency support to recruit into this area alone. Other noticeably busy practice areas include Corporate, Construction, Commercial litigation, Employment and Property Litigation. Surprise increases in the number of Commercial Insurance opportunities were also found.

For trainees qualifying in 2020, I guess the question you may find asking yourself is how will this look for me next year? Although looking at this year’s figures to assess and plot the market for next year would seem logical, it is such a turbulent and ever-changing environment that it cannot reliably predict what is to come. The best advice we can give is to get in touch with us as early as possible, start developing that relationship so we fully understand your preferences whether it be in regard to firm or practice area. Having a good recruiter to assist in your job search not only can help map out the market, but you can also get advice on suitable teams, quality and variety of work and other factors you may deem necessary in making an informed decision on which options you would like to consider when the suitable roles begin to materialise.  In the meantime, check out our Qualification E-Book by clicking here for this year to give you a headstart.


If you have been thinking about a move or would just like some general advice about options in the market, please feel free to contact one of our dedicated consultants on 0113 2385965 or 0161 3000750.

CapeClarke is a leading niche legal recruitment consultancy operating across Leeds, Manchester, Sheffield, Newcastle, Liverpool and London. Please feel free to check out our priority legal vacancies by clicking here.  Please note these legal vacancies are only a small selection of those we have been instructed on, so please get in touch if you do not see a role which looks suitable.

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