The recent steady growth in the legal jobs market is good news for law graduates. Experts are suggesting, however, that graduates who want to get ahead specialise in a particular area of law to secure the best position possible and increase their employability.
Angus MacGregor, human resources director at the law firm Eversheds, says his company’s offices in London focus on specific areas such as banking, corporate and financial services litigation.
For graduating students, specialising in one or more key areas will mean better job security and longevity, as firms seek out employees with highly specialised skills.
If you’re considering specialisation, here are some things to take into consideration.
– Get a wide variety of experience. If you’re not sure what area of law you would like to specialise in, then get as much experience across as many different areas of law as possible. As a law student or in your early legal career, spread yourself across as many different projects, cases and niche areas as possible. This will help determine exactly which area of law you are most suited to, and where you want your area of focus to be.
– Consider your career goals. Different areas of law offer different career trajectories. If you’re interested in an international legal career that involves a lot of travel and overseas placements, then commercial, corporate and environmental law will be more conducive to that career path than areas such as family law. Consider the way you would like your career to progress when deciding on your area of specialisation and the legal jobs that are right for you.
– Match your area of specialisation to your interests. From family, to commercial, to corporate, to environmental law there are a number of niches in which lawyers can specialise. A good way to narrow down your options is to match your area of specialisation to your interests. If you have a keen interest in the fast paced world of business and commercial matters, then commercial law jobs will be a great fit. Being interested in the area in which you practice is a way of laying the groundwork for a happy and fulfilling career.
Another factor to consider when deciding on your area of specialisation is the number of jobs available and the level of demand of different industries.
What area of law will you specialise in?