Is it time to re-imagine work experience as we traditionally know it?
WORK experience in its traditional and simplest form is the perfect opportunity to see if employer and job seeker are mutually suited.
While offering the candidate an insight into their chosen career and the chance to enhance their CV, it also gives the employer an opportunity to professionally gauge the capability and suitable of the job seeker.
But as recruitment specialist Judith Broughton explores, have the pandemic-led challenges of allowing people into the workplace forced a re-think when it comes to hands on work experience?
Judith, who works for Peterborough-based Anne Corder Recruitment, said: “We are all familiar with the benefits of work experience; offering skills and life lessons that cannot be taught in the classroom.
“While many job seekers have enjoyed school, college or university placements with employers over many years, the pandemic has forced candidates, employers and recruiters to think again about work experience and explore different ways of measuring and demonstrating skill sets for all parties.”
She added: “The lack of opportunity job seekers have had in recent months to physically enter a workplace, or for employers to see their prospects ‘in action’ in the workplace has been, and continues to be frustrating for those looking to gain employment and to recruit right now.
“However, there are a number of ways in which job seekers can demonstrate their skills and show off their personality to employers who must also be willing to adapt to new ways.”
- Update their CV to demonstrate any lockdown additions to their skillset.
- Create a LinkedIn profile which adds personality to their credentials.
- Show they are a team player with evidence of being part of a sports team, music group, community organisation etc.
- Prove they have the ability to take a brief and get the job done, through a volunteering placement for example.
- Demonstrate self-motivation through learning a new skill or embarking on an external course.
- Show assertiveness through having held a position of responsibility, perhaps as a student council member or club captain.
Judith added: “While employers may not have been able to share office space or hands on working time with candidates, there is now an opportunity to get to know them, consider their worth ethic and gain an insight into their personality through measures like role play exercises, work shadowing, re-introducing psychometric testing or even just asking them to answer the phone - personality and being a great fit may be just as important to the business as ability and capability.”
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