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Trying to get a job

(9 Posts)
examfreak Mon 20-Jun-11 15:16:28

Any advice?

I would like to be working and I have been applying for jobs and I cannot get even an interview. Since being made redundant whilst on maternity leave in 2007 I have set up my own business which I ran for 3 years before relocating and since then I have worked voluntary for my dd's preschool for various roles but currently secretary and web manager.

So I have kept busy and have gained more skills plus all the experience I have no one will interview me. I spoke to an agency on Friday about 3 applications I made which were similar to the role I did before children and they said that because I been out of a commercial environment in all that time they could not put me forward for the jobs they had as I no longer had commercial experience despite me gaining several other skills and the jobs i have been applying for are admin/secretarial roles which most people can do.

So I have been thinking about trying to do an internship to get back in the commercial environment but we need money, I cannot afford to work for nothing and pay childcare. I've recently done a course in design so I am working on that in the evenings and I hope to get work experience related to that and do more courses so that I might set up another business in the future but for now I need a job. Is anyone else having these problems? Has anyne had this problem and then resolved it? What can I do? It's very frustrating sad

MissingMySleep Mon 20-Jun-11 19:36:27

You could maybe go back to the agency and ask them to reconsider, as that does not seem very reasonable. You can either do the job or you can't. When I have conducted interviews I have been just as happy with people returning after a career break (I know this isn't what you have done) as those who are in unbroken periods of corporate employment. At's more about their skills and whether they are the right person for the job.

MovingAndScared Mon 20-Jun-11 19:48:07

Hi - I would suggested maybe a skill based CV - so skills first and then a very breif work history -and I would included the voluntary work in it as well I suspect there are a lot of applicants at the moment so the agencey may be just using it an excuse to rule you out

examfreak Tue 21-Jun-11 11:19:50

Thanks for your replies. The agency seemed very sure about what their clients want. Perhaps their clients would like to see a wider range of cv's? I think I will have to write directly to companies and maybe the companies would prefer not to pay the agency.....

where can I find an example of a skills based cv please?

MovingAndScared Tue 21-Jun-11 13:39:16

have a look in your local libray for cv writing books - I liked one called killer cvs - but there are lots
I don't think you can go direct to the companies who are using an agengy but lots of companies do advertise their vacancies directly on their website so it can be well worth that approach

ScramblyEgg Tue 21-Jun-11 15:41:21

I think you might be better off going for jobs being advertised direct by the employers rather than using an agency, as you say. At a recent job hunting workshop, I was told that agencies mainly want candidates who are already doing exactly that same type of job they're applying for.

Also writing on spec to companies you'd like to work for is apparently worth doing, although I haven't tried it myself.

I'm in a similar position to you, it's so frustrating!

examfreak Tue 21-Jun-11 17:45:16

I forgot all about the library! i will go there and have a look.... thanks, i did have a look online and found some examples on totaljobs.com
thanks for your replies, i think i have a long way to go before i find something...

Watersign76 Wed 22-Jun-11 00:41:16

I wonder if it is better to have a CV that doesn't allude to the fact you have kids? Assuming you offer info about the pre-school volunteering. If I were you, I might be inclinded to position your business as your current employement - could that technically be true? Or was it location based where you previously lived.

I know that employers are meant to be fair and by hiding the kids (!) one could be accused of contributing to the general problem...but I think it does cross people's minds - time off for sickness, future pregnancies...I take my wedding ring off for interviews!

I have never found agencies any good, nor do I know many people who seem to get jobs through them! So definately try to focus on direct jobs.

Have you also used things like www.indeed.co.uk - they search all the job sites, so you might come adverts in obscure places. I know from work, we generally only post it on a couple of sites.

I have worked in the charity sector and internships do seem to offer the person something. Many orgs will "accept" part-time interns, which might be more feasible?

I think it is tough out there. A friend offered a office manager role at her org and over 200 people applied. Yet, at work we offered a very specific role and only had a few applications.

Have you asked somebody else to review your CV? That can sometimes help too.

Don't give up, the perfect job is out there!

andreaberlin Wed 22-Jun-11 17:07:11

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