Updated: Dec 13, 2020
Getting your first job can be a daunting task but this step by step guide will help you by covering:
Where to look for part-time opportunities
How to make your application
How to remain professional throughout the process
There are lots of websites available in the UK where companies can post their available job roles. Here are a few:
www.indeed.co.uk : This is popular with companies because it is free to post jobs. You can filter your search to part time, the radius from your post code you want to search and set up alerts so that when a particular job role (i.e. "part time retail assistant") is added, you will be notified.
www.totaljobs.com : Companies have to pay to post their jobs on this website, but lots are still available on there. They have similar functions to search for a job but you will need to make an account to apply (this is free).
Swindon Designer Outlet : If you are based in Swindon, the outlet centre have a job role designated to their outlet stores. You can search just for part time roles and they also run job fairs frequently so keep an eye out for these.
Direct Company Website : Some companies will only advertise their job roles on their own website, if you search the company you're interested in followed by the word 'careers', you will find their direct page. Here are a few examples: Asda, Better Gyms, McColls
How to make your application
Different companies will have different ways to apply, some will ask for a CV whereas others will ask you to complete an application form. Here are my top tips for both:
1. Make sure you have a professional email address (not the embarrassing one you made 5 years ago!) 2. Companies might call you so make sure you have a professional voice message 3. Use the same font throughout your CV 4. Would you be happy if a potential employer checked your social media accounts? No? Make sure they don't contain anything that may cause embarrassment if asked about at interview. 5. Use a mixture of bullet points and paragraphs, too much of either might bore the reader.
1. They can be quite long but stay focussed, a lot of the information they're asking for you can copy from your CV.
2. Ask a friend or family member to check your application before submitting in case you have made and spelling or grammatical errors.
3. Make sure your answer relates to the job you're applying for. For example, if they ask what skills you have, look at what skills they're looking for and answer accordingly.
4. Always use examples, tell them how you developed your skills or when you have used particular skills. For example, "I am always on time" is good but "I am always on time, this is evidenced by my 100% attendance certificate from school" is better!
5. Be yourself! Don't try and become someone else, just be honest in your experience and abilities. It is likely you will be applying for a junior role, so the company won't expect you to know everything.
Whatever the outcome of your application, remain professional. If you weren't successful, send a follow up email thanking the hiring manager - you never know when your paths might cross again! Also, ask them for feedback, if you know why you weren't offered the job then you can change your approach for next time.
Still need help? Speak to your careers team at school or get in touch.