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Mark Bailey

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Mark Bailey

Principal Consultant - Legal

I connect qualified and non-qualified legal professionals with in-house Commerce & Industry opportunities. While I specialise in providing solutions for contract and interim roles, I also work with Nick Allen on permanent vacancies, having successfully managed permanent processes on behalf of candidates and clients, throughout my career.


My network and recruitment knowledge includes Commerce & Industry, Not-For-Profit and public-sector contacts and clients. Within these areas, I have developed great relationships with clients and candidates in areas such as technology, energy, transportation, manufacturing, charities, central and local government bodies.


As I’m fortunate enough to live in London, I keep myself busy with anything and everything, whether that’s at a museum, the theatre, food markets or one of London’s cat cafes.


If I wasn’t in recruitment, my dream occupation would be a kid’s TV presenter, a modern-day Andi Peters, and I would need my own sidekick like Edd the Duck.

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What people say about Mark

Mark was super helpful and supportive during my job search.  He treated me as an individual, which I really appreciate.


I’ve only had positive experiences with working with Mark and so, now with Pro Legal. 


Mark was very efficient and helpful throughout the process. I had a couple of other options going on at the same time and Mark made this easier


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Companies Mark has worked with

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mark's articles

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Phone Interviews - 10 Foolproof Tips

Posted by Mark Bailey

Phone interviews are a great tool for saving time and are very different to being able to read body language in a face to face meeting but, with phone interviews around for the foreseeable future, it’s still wise to prepare for the preventable. While some of these points seem obvious, it’s still surprising as to how often a client or candidate’s feedback has mentioned an unfortunate misstep. 1. Location Avoiding anywhere noisy may sound obvious but if you’re taking a call at lunchtime and the only place to do it is in a coffee shop at peak time, you may not have the interviewer’s full attention and vice versa. Noisy pets and family members are also worth taking into consideration. Consider a meeting room, a quiet room at home or even a (parked) car. 2. Consider the signal That black spot can always be useful when receiving unsolicited calls but avoid talking in locations that you are particularly bad for reception. If a landline isn’t available, phone a friend or a member of your family beforehand, just to ensure the signal is at its strongest. Should you wish to keep it confidential, call your mobile phone company and say you just wanted to check everything was all okay with the signal in your area. 3. Familiarise yourself with the role and company While we are all adept at multitasking in our day to day lives and at work, you are putting yourself at risk by trying to read the company website and/or job specification at the same time as interviewing. Unfortunately, with only your voice to focus on, a seasoned interviewer is able to easily spot when they do not have your full attention. 4. Make sure you are ready early You may be expecting a call at 3 pm so be ready at least 5mins beforehand. With the possibility of both parties’ timepieces being slightly out of sync, you could easily miss that initial phone call and, while hitting redial takes no effort at all, you run the risk of ruining that first impression. 5. Do not answer immediately Allow yourself 2-3 rings to compose yourself, the interviewer will be doing the exact same thing. While answering immediately shows you are keen to talk, it can also be slightly startling to the person calling you, leading to a moment of hesitation or fluster. 6. Expecting urgent, life-changing news or a knock at the door? Tell this to the interviewer at the top of the call. It’s much better to make them aware (if you did not have time to ask for the call to be rescheduled) than cutting someone short out of the blue, to take an all-important call or answer the door for a long conversation. 7. Avoid cutting the interviewer off We all have a tendency to get over-excited therefore talking over one another happens more frequently on the phone (we all do this when we talk to friends and family, don’t we?). Be aware that this behaviour over the phone comes across as much more abrupt and aggressive. 8. Ask questions An interviewer will always ask if you have any more questions; ensure you have a few to hand as opposed to ending the conversation with a “no”. This is your chance to show how interested you are if you like what you have heard so far, otherwise, it’s quite an anticlimax for the interviewer who has taken time out of their diary to discuss the role with you. Even better, have a notepad ready to jot down notes to refer back to. 9. Allow an extra 30-45mins after the scheduled interview time Should the conversation flow, having the opportunity to further affirm your interest and leave a deeper impression on the interviewer, can only be a positive. Those extra few minutes could make all the difference, showcasing your ability to build rapport. However please ensure you don’t stray towards filling the conversation, just to keep the interviewer on the phone. 10. Practice As obvious as all the points may seem, sit down and work with your recruiter in a mock interview scenario. Having to spend a lot of time on the phone interviewing people, we can help you avoid pitfalls such as “dead air”, construct concise yet informative answers and ensure you are getting as much out of the conversation as an interviewer would expect to. Find out more about how Mark Bailey can help with your recruitment needs by contacting him on +44 (0)20 7269 6365

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How to Handle Interview Questions Like a Pro

Posted by Mark Bailey

While the following list isn’t exhaustive, it will serve as a good starting point when it comes to the kinds of questions you will more than likely be asked in an interview. Where possible, we will always advise you as to what questions may arise before your interview. 1. What do you know about us? While this may seem like a simple question, the number of people we speak to on a regular basis who are unable to answer this will surprise you. Do your research. A great way to answer is to give a very brief overview of the area they specialise in and, how the legal team or particular department fits into the company or firm’s plans. If you have researched the interviewers you are meeting, you can tailor your answers to focus on their expertise and experience. 2. Why are you interested in us? While you may have answered what the company does, do not confuse this with why you’re interested in them. Employers want to understand what it is about their organisation specifically that appeals to you. Simply telling them you are interested in the sectors they are involved in, for example, is not going far enough. What is it about this company or firm that sits apart from their competition? A great way to show interest in a potential employer is to relate your interest in the work they do back to your work history and personal experience. 3. Why are you looking to leave? Be honest. While it is never wise to be overly-negative towards your current employer, if there are certain things you’re not happy with, you need to ensure you don’t end up in the exact same situation in your next role. Most negatives when phrased correctly can be framed as a positive. For example, if you’re unhappy because you haven’t had a promotion in several years, a much better way to answer this is to discuss the lack of opportunity for you in your current job to develop and take on more responsibilities. 4. Where else are you interviewing? Most people will ask simply to get a better understanding as to what timescales you’re working to. If you’re interviewing at several places, it’s better to keep all parties involved on the same page; it gives each organisation a fair opportunity to complete their process with you in a particular timescale. Furthermore, if and when an organisation misses out on hiring you, as long as you were honest throughout the process, you may well have the opportunity to revisit the role/organisation in the future should the chance arise. 5. Does your current employer know that you are looking? In the majority of cases, this is likely to be a no. However there are a number of reasons a current employer may well know this; the most common reasons tend to be due to a change in role, lack of opportunity for progression, an office move, the need for a new challenge if one cannot be offered or redundancy. If you are able to have a conversation with your employer, that’s great - if it’s a positive conversation at least you will know you are leaving for the right reasons. Potential employers will be impressed by such a positive conversation with your current employer, so do not be put off discussing this in an interview if the circumstances around it can be seen in a positive light. 6. What questions do you have for us? Ensure you have paid enough attention during the interview to ask related questions about the role and organisation. Having done your research beforehand, if you feel something has not been covered in the interview, ask for clarification. As well as the interviewers testing you, this meeting is your chance to discuss your responsibilities, the wider team and culture of the organisation, so make sure you leave the meeting with a good understanding of this. Matters to avoid are questions about salary, working hours, perks and a breakdown of the benefits package. While they all play into our decision making, you do not want to distract from the reason you’re sat there. These conversations can be had via your recruitment consultant and the HR department. Always make sure you have asked enough questions to know how you would feel if they were to offer you the job. Here at Pro-Legal, our consultants have a great deal of experience preparing candidates for interviews, therefore if you would like a confidential discussion on any of the points raised above or the market generally, do please get in touch.

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Changing opinions of interim recruitment

Posted by Mark Bailey

Where legal departments were typically filled with permanent employees in the past, more and more legal professionals and organisations have seen the benefit of an interim solution. Where before there was a stigma regarding lawyers working for several companies over a period time, the experience and autonomy these same candidates can offer has proven invaluable. If, as an organisation you have a sudden increase in work, the workloads and stress can be immediately alleviated by someone with a wealth of knowledge and an excellent set of skills, whose training requirements only stretch to company systems and the health & safety induction; the same rules apply when hiring someone on maternity cover too. And of course, once the work is complete, not only will a level of consistency be achieved, organisations may have benefited from a “fresh pair of eyes” providing innovative ways of solving problems, based on a culmination of problem-solving situations they have been a part of. Lawyers that are currently in or are looking to move into the interim market will see the merits of having a varied career path; such as gaining insight into multiple industries, working on a variety of projects, increasing their legal network and gaining skills they may not be afforded from working within one organisation for a long period of time. People who have taken long-term leave, whether due to illness, travel or maternity/paternity leave have also felt the benefits of being able to work on a more fluid basis that suits their needs and requirements. There is also the benefit of being able to take regular breaks in between contracts or work on a part-time basis, leading to an easily manageable work/life balance. While there are of course risks on both sides, for instance, a party choosing to part ways before the end of the contract, with there being a huge increase in quality lawyers choosing to work on an interim basis and an increase in opportunities, there is always a solution readily available. Having specialised in legal recruitment for many years, both Nick and I have noted a sustained increase in commerce & industry and financial services requirements on an interim and contract basis, with no signs of it changing in 2018. If you are interested in having a confidential discussion about interim and contract opportunities, do please get in touch.

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