Getting a part time job as a student can be tough if you don’t know what you are doing. This is the first article in a series of articles, that will help you get on track to find that perfect part time job!
So, you are looking to find a part time job while you are at university or college? This can be a great way to start building up your CV, as well as earning some extra money on the side.
Most universities recommend that you work up to, but no more than 16 hours a week. This is to ensure that you are keeping up to date with your studying. Plus, it is also beneficial for you to have days off and time to just enjoy life, without having to worry about rushing to university or work.
So, what skills do I need for my CV?
Transferable skills are important for your CV and interviews. You can put them on your CV even if you haven’t ever had a job. There are examples of how you probably poses most of these skills already!
If you are coming straight from school, you may have never been in employment. This is ok! What you need to remember are to sell your transferable skills! Have you ever volunteered for charity? Have you ever done a great school project, or gained a good social media following?
These are all transferable skills. Think back to a time where you helped someone, or a group of people. What did you learn from this experience, and what skills did you take away from it?
This is vital for you to tell employers, as it can help to make up for that lack of ‘real world’ experience.
Below is a list of some transferable skills you may have gathered by mowing lawns, or helping out your local community;
- Research and Communication Skills – Really sell this as a great customer service skill. Think of times you have dealt with members of the public. *Bonus* If you can think of a time when you dissipated a tense situation, this can also show that you can think fast in times of adversity.
- Organisation Skills and Time Management – You have just gotten into college/university. That took a lot of organising your UCAS application, and writing your personal statement within time constraints. You were likely doing this while also balancing school qualifications. This shows time management skills which are great for employers to hear about. Did you turn up on time for class and extra-curricular activities? This means you are organised and timely.
- Writing/Numerical skills – Do you have your Standard Grade English or Maths? Perhaps you have even higher qualifications. These are sought after, as they prove that you have basic skills in English and Maths. This will be useful for retail and bar jobs, which require you to use a till. If you are applying for a job which requires money handling, which most do, big up that you have a school grade in maths, and that you often have to manage your money yourself.
- Trustworthy – Have you ever been trusted with great responsibility? Bring this up here to show that you are capable of dealing with situations which require you to be trusted in your new role. This links in with the last point about numerical skills. Try to link them by naming a time when you were trusted with money handling.
You can also use the above transferable skills to include in your CV, to go along with any work experience you may have.
Applying for jobs.
Here are some things to consider while applying through these sites;
- Apply for jobs that are within your travel range and mode of transport. Especially if it’s at night and you are relying on public transport
- Apply for jobs with contracts that suit you and days that suit your availability
- Don’t waste employers time by applying for full time jobs, or jobs that you are unsuitable for
- Make sure you are going to be given at least minimum wage, and fair breaks. Check out government rules for where you live
- Apply for jobs that you can actually see yourself doing, there is no point taking a job that you are going to hate. I know that money is an issue, but your sanity is more important
- This one is controversial, but decide wisely if you want to take a zero hour contract. These can be unpredictable
- Consider temporary jobs at Christmas or during summer for full time hours on a temporary basis
Once you find a job you want to apply for
- Tailor your cover letter to each individual job. I know this can be tedious, but the employer needs to know you want their job, and not just sending out generic CV’s.
- Try to keep your phone on you at all times so that you can answer any interview requests. Sometimes employers will only phone you once as they go through their shortlist. Try your best to get back in good time if you miss the call
- Sell yourself and your skills in your cover letter and CV! Let them know why you would be great at this job! (While still using professional language)
- Make sure you let the potential employer know of any dates off you have already booked, and your availability. This avoids confusion, and makes sure that they are aware of your time constraints.
Good luck with your future job hunting! Leave a comment letting me know whether this was useful or not! Please share using the buttons below, if you know someone that would find this useful!
Lead writer for The Lazzzy Student x