Help and advice when applying for a job
Get money saving tips straight to your inbox
Join 100,000+ subscribers to get our free newsletter packed with tips and advice.
Privacy promise: We will never share your data or spam you.
For most people, one of the most daunting things about job loss is the thought of searching for a new job. But if you’ve been made redundant or lost your job it may be an opportunity to find something better or more satisfying – or even to try something new.
Polish your CV
Did you know?
Many people don’t know that if you’re working a redundancy notice you are allowed to take reasonable time off to look for a new job.
First things first, make sure your CV does its job. A good CV gets attention by giving key facts about your suitability and then providing additional information to back up that positive first impression.
Get professional help with your CV
If you are being made redundant your employer may arrange access to a career advice service that includes help with CV writing, so make sure you check.
Start your search for a new job
Professional contacts, former colleagues and even friends and family can be a valuable source of help when looking for a new job.
There are lots of different places to look for work, some tried and tested such as recruitment agencies and newspapers. But don’t forget your work contacts, former colleagues and friends and family either.
- Use the GOV.UK website for thousands of job listings in England, Scotland and Wales
- Use the JobCentreOnline website for thousands of job listings in Northern Ireland
- Go to the Recruitment and Employment Confederation directory to check out other employment agencies
Use the internet to look for jobs
- There are many jobs websites where you can post your CV or search for jobs
- National and local newspapers, as well as trade and professional organisations, have online recruitment sections that are up to date and easy to search
- Most companies and businesses list vacancies on their websites
Call around for vacancies and job opportunities
Don’t be shy. Phone the companies or organisations you are interested in working for and ask who you can send your CV to.
Look around you for vacancies or opportunities
Many companies and shops advertise jobs on their premises or in their shop windows. You can always ask for an application even if you don’t see a notice.
Get help with your search
These days many job opportunities are advertised online and professional networking sites like LinkedIn and social networking sites like Facebook can make a real difference to your search.
There are several websites that offer help, depending where you live.
- More help with your job search is available on the GOV.UK website
- Northern Ireland – search the nidirect website
- In Scotland – visit PACE (Partnership Action for Continuing Employment)
- In Wales – check out CareersWales.com
- The Prince’s Trust offers help and advice if you’re under 25 and looking for work
Prepare for the job interview
Once you’ve got your foot in the door and you have an interview, do your homework and make sure you’re well prepared to make a good impression on the day.
- Find out about the company or organisation – the internet is often the best place to start
- Prepare yourself for questions you might be asked – practise speaking confidently about yourself and your abilities
- Plan your journey to the interview, what you’ll wear and what you need to bring with you
- For more tips on preparing for an interview see the National Careers Service website
Consider volunteering while you look for work
Finding a new job takes time and it can be hard to keep your spirits up. Consider volunteering in the meantime. It’ll get you out of the house and you could learn valuable skills or make contacts that lead to paid work at some point. Volunteering will not affect your benefits.
This might be the chance to make that career change you’ve been thinking about.