14 October 2016

Law firms hire from the smallest pool

New research shows that law firms hire graduates from fewer universities than other industries such as accountancy and spend the most money in the process.

By Victoria Basham


The Association of Graduate Recruiters (AGR) report surveyed 208 employers in the UK from 17 different sectors and found that law firms hired graduates from 19 universities, compared to 50 for accountancy or other professional services firms and 30 for banking or financial services.

The research also shows that law firms are among those which visit the least number of universities during the recruitment process – typically 17. The only industries which visited fewer were investment bank or fund managers (12) and energy, water or utility companies (15).

Bigger spend

Moreover, law firms spend on average £6,811 per graduate hire compared with an average of £3,383. £5,195 of the total was spent on ‘attraction and marketing’ and £1,516 on ‘selection and assessment.’ 

Recruit from all disciplines

By way of explanation, Stephen Isherwood, AGR’s chief executive, told Legal Cheek that unlike other sectors in the UK, law firms recruit from all disciplines. This means they are more likely to target their marketing efforts at certain universities, rather than recruiting by discipline. He added that the figure of 19 is an average, so larger firms could be recruiting from 30 or 40 different universities.

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