With Eva Arelic, senior consultant, Randstad Legal
Are my chances of finding out about all private practice vacancies increased by signing up with every recruitment agency in my city?
You will find that many of your city's established legal recruitment agencies are recruiting for the same roles, therefore signing up with several agencies may be a waste of time and may in fact create a logistical nightmare for yourself in keeping track of which agency has sent your CV where.
In saying this, some firms will initially brief a selection of preferred agencies or one agency on their vacancies and then if those agencies do not provide suitable candidates within a set period of time (perhaps two to four weeks) the firm will then open the role up to a number of other agencies also.
My advice is to ask your colleagues to recommend an agent - not just the name of an agency but the name of a consultant. Call those consultants and find one who you establish rapport with. Ask that agent to represent you and give them some time to find you a role. If you feel after a few weeks (or a few months for more senior lawyers) that it is not moving quickly enough for you, then perhaps see another agency as well.
If you are using a number of agencies it is essential that you keep an accurate record of where your CV has been sent as it can be rather embarrassing for yourself and your agents when a firm advises that they have already received your CV three times in three days!