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22nd Aug 2023

In-House Legal Job Market Update August 2023 – Check Video

Andrew Murdoch explores the 5 main trends we're seeing in the In-House Legal Market after the end of the financial year as we head into the final stretch of 2023.


Hello, this is Andrew Murdoch from Dovetail Legal Solutions, with an in-house legal job market update for August. There are five main trends we’re seeing at the moment. I’m going to run through these in turn.

Firstly, what is not commonly known is that July and August are the quietest months for the in-house legal recruitment market and this year has been no exception. We expect this is due to a combination of the end of the financial year, school holidays and people waiting to receive their bonuses before they look for another job.

Secondly, the busiest time of the recruitment market is between September and December, with December being surprisingly busy as organizations look to recruit prior to the end of the year to utilise their budget and also to have people start fresh in the new year.

Thirdly, since COVID, we’ve seen the rise and rise of city-centric in-house legal markets. Candidates are less willing to move from one city to the other. Five years ago, we would have seen Melbourne lawyers move to Sydney. Sydney lawyers moved to Perth. We’re seeing that less frequently now. I think COVID has changed people’s perception of distance and how far it is to move.

But secondly, I think the property price rises in each of the cities and the stamp duty costs in changing properties has also impacted the movement of candidates from one city to another.

Fourth, all cities and industries are showing strong demand. There was a slight hiccup with the tech sector when US tech companies made redundancies following the crash of the Silicon Bank.

But since then I think demand has returned and we’re going to see strong demand between here and the end of the year. Lastly, salaries last financial year saw a strong increase in in-house legal salaries. We’re seeing that increase slow now as companies hold fast to their budgets and if necessary, recruit a more junior lawyer instead of recruiting more senior. There’s less wriggle room than there was previously.

Thank you.

And if you’re looking to change jobs or looking to recruit, please give me a call and see how we can help at Dovetail.