Advanced search

to send this letter ?

(19 Posts)
catfourfeet Wed 19-Nov-14 19:56:34

I'm trying to get a work placement / experience to restart my programming career.

please feel free to tear the following apart smile

Dear Sir /Madam

I am currently looking for an unpaid part-time work placement / experience as an SQL database developer.

I have 7 years’ experience of working on NHS SQL databases. More recently I have been self-employed for 10 years running a ** business.

A possible time scale might be 2 days a week for 6 months.

Please see the enclosed CV for more details of my qualifications and experience.

I would aim to be beneficial to your organisation whilst also gaining relevant up-to-date skills for my future employment.

If you require any further information or wish to meet for a face-to-face discussion I would be more than happy to oblige.
Yours sincerely


DoJo Wed 19-Nov-14 20:01:47

I would take out the 'I would aim' bit - you WILL be an asset to any company that takes you on, so don't sell yourself short or leave them in any doubt!

Jolleigh Wed 19-Nov-14 20:03:20

In the 'I would aim to be beneficial' sentence, insert 'working to a set of mutually agreeable objectives'. It implies your work would be more structured and you wouldn't be just dipping in just here and there.

woowoo22 Wed 19-Nov-14 20:04:09

Can you not offer your skills for paid employment?

If not, I would poss call it an internship. The word unpaid looks odd. Might just be me though.

Jolleigh Wed 19-Nov-14 20:05:31

Contradictory advice already wink . It's very much a personal style thing. FWIW, when I've had to assess job candidates previously, it's not really a given that I'd see a concise, well written letter. This is better than many I've seen.

catfourfeet Wed 19-Nov-14 20:07:16

thanks for the replies.

I see what you mean about the "aim" bit.

I would feel happier ( initially) to be unpaid as Im ,. VERY rusty !

angelohsodelight Wed 19-Nov-14 20:24:53

Find put the persons name, don't address it to dear sir or madam

sizeup Wed 19-Nov-14 20:46:27

Maybe "voluntary" would be a better word, instead of "unpaid"?

NamesNick Wed 19-Nov-14 20:56:46

where are you? as I know a company who may be interested.

if you are chesire based then I can send you details?

6 months seems a long time to me, and also might start to give them obligations as an employer, and therefore necessitate NMW?

PeppermintInfusion Wed 19-Nov-14 21:11:29

If you have already worked as a SQL programmer could you not take some training/refresher courses and then look for paid employment that way?
There is such a shortage of decent programmers for many companies that they hire non-programmers/even people without an IT background and train them up so coming from your experience might be an advantage?

NakedFamilyFightClub Wed 19-Nov-14 21:13:30

To be honest OP, if you're not confident enough to ask to be paid, I'm not sure I'd want you working on any of the applications I work on without heavy supervision, which will have a cost in an experienced developers time and that will cost the business money.

I think sizeups suggestion of voluntary puts a much better spin on it.

It's probably on your CV but I think you should specify which type of databases you've worked on, MySpace, Oracle, Microsoft etc. Just SQL sounds a bit vague.

Have you any DB specific qualifications? You could do some revision to work towards a qualification in your spare time that would help with the rustiness.

NakedFamilyFightClub Wed 19-Nov-14 21:15:03

Aah, autocorrect! MySQL not MySpace!

DoJo Wed 19-Nov-14 22:05:31

Ha ha NFFC - I was just wondering how many companies are really looking for MySpace experts to bring them to the cutting edge of 2006! Once technology advances and autocorrect is no longer a thing, life will be much duller...grin

NakedFamilyFightClub Wed 19-Nov-14 22:33:27

grin true DoJo! Mind you I do know of a local company who work with ASP and whose job adverts promise you'll work on new and exciting technology so MySpace would probably fit in nicely there wink

FinallyHere Thu 20-Nov-14 07:28:09

I understand that its not easy for you. I notice, though, that this letter is mostly focused on what you want to get out of it, with a nod in their direction. I can't imagine the circumstance, other than a soft heart, which would make this a call to action to hire you. It always takes time and effort to get new employees up to speed, so this is not a situation of no cost to them.

How would it be to narrow your focus a bit more, work out who is using the systems where you would soon be an asset, and target them, once you know what you could do for them. Then, ask for 15 minutes to talk to them about the issues they are currently facing using <that system> and where they see it going.

If you can do this to the people selling / developing the software/applications, you might be able to work out who their customer are. Check out their web site for the grateful thanks from customers section for some leads. You ask these people for a short meeting to discuss <things important to them as above> rather than your training needs.

You then pitch yourself, either immediately if you can do it or in a follow up letter/meeting, to say what you could do for them. And yes, you have to pitch yourself rather than ask them to train you. Employers will know implicitly that there will be training involved going forward, we want to know that you have the right attitude up front, so that the employer will get the benefit of the training they invest in you. Get your pitch really clear, and work out what you can offer to do for them, to demonstrate your skills and do ask the question, if you are happy with 'this report' or 'that demonstration model' will there be a space for me.

And, yes, you are then going to have to work your socks off, and keep a diary of what has been promised to whom, don't stop when you get the first bite, keep a few irons in the fire til you get a real offer.

Not easy, hope this makes some sense, all the very best.

Sothisishowitfeels Thu 20-Nov-14 07:41:10

Tbh it sounds fine to me. Dh and I have a software development company and in the past have taken on a school leaver as an apprentice because he sent a letter similar (he is still with us).

Where are you based?

catfourfeet Thu 20-Nov-14 15:59:00


Thanks for all the good ideas.

I'm focusing on companies who use oracle sql as that's my area.

I'm in the West Midlands .

catfourfeet Fri 19-Dec-14 21:17:56

Update :

I sent off 13 letters and went in to talk to two companies.

Im starting a "training" job in Jan !!

Whooo hoooo !!

Thanks for all the good advice :-)

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now