As I've mentioned before, last year I completely changed careers from working in hospitality management to working in recruitment. I had been working in hospitality for well over 11 years and I've done everything from applying for jobs myself,attending interviews, interviewing people, reading over CVs and recruiting, so I feel like I've picked up a few tips and advice along the way so I thought I would impart that in a couple of posts.
Nearly 50% of the population last year looked for a new job in January according to UK job sites. Whether you’re looking to change career completely or just looking a new job here’s the best switching career advice I’ve learnt along the way.
Where to go
Sites like REED, Indeed, Monster etc are a great start. Firstly to look for local jobs but also recruiters use these sites to trawl CV's.
If you don't mind being contacted by a recruiter then keep your profile attractive by always keeping your profile updated with your most recent CV and contact details.
Also if you do decide to upload a photo, please make sure it is professional. A snapchat filter or you on a night out is not desirable
If you know a couple of specific companies you would like to work for then go on their careers page (most companies have them at the bottom of their website these days) and apply for suitable roles.
If they don't have any live, chance it anyway and send your CV and cover letter to a contact email you find on their page. You never know what they may be recruiting for that they haven't just advertised. Ensure you include in the cover letter why you want to work for that company
Hand in a CV
Where relevant. Some companies won't appreciate you popping in but if its a store or a restaurant, for instance, they like to see people with confidence and happy to go and hand in a CV face to face.
If you do greet anyone make sure you are friendly and chatty even if its just a receptionist or a waitress. Trust me they will report back. Also dress fairly smartly. Not a suit but not a tracksuit. First impressions really count.
Other Important Advice
Read before you apply
Read the description of the job, if it says “must have 3 years experience in this field” they want someone with 3 years experience. If you have 2 they may consider you so it’s still worth applying but if you have no experience at all, don’t waste your time applying. Instead apply for jobs that are best for your skill set.
I know you're probably thinking they might not have any other applications, they may take me on anyway. Trust me they will hold out till they find the right person if you're not.
Experience is everything
In some job roles they will want certain qualifications, for instance, CIPD Level 3 with HR but most employers are looking for people with relevant experience over any qualifications.
My personal opinion is University is great if you want a specific degree like teaching or nursing but it's not necessary to go to Uni. Saying that I learnt a lot of life skills from uni but if you haven’t been you’re not at a disadvantage to finding a job.
What to do if you don’t have experience in a field you want to work in;
-Apply for internships
-Find work experience
-Consider an entry-level role in that sector
I may be biased because I’m a recruiter but I genuinely think using recruitment agencies to assist in your job search is a great advantage.
Recruitment agencies can recruit for hundreds of different companies, obviously depending on the agency and they often recruit for roles that aren’t live on job boards. They can offer advice and they can even help negotiate on your behalf as they will have a longstanding relationship with the clients.
Be realistic about your salary
A lot of first-time job seekers have no idea about salary and how much they should be earning and expect £20,000 from their first job.
Do your research and even use the tax calculator (click here) to see how much money you will be taking a month to see whether this is realistic to live off. If you are starting in a completely new sector, yes you may have transferable skills but as mentioned, if you don’t have the exact skill set you may have to consider a salary drop in order to climb the ladder again