Some students find work placement daunting but once you prepare yourself it doesn’t have to be! Here are some tips in helping you to find the perfect placement for you. 

Benefits of work placement

Work experience provides a great opportunity to gain experience in a real working environment as well as looking good on your CV. It can really help you to make an informed decision on a chosen career path. It will provide an excellent opportunity to explore options first-hand and gain an insight into a specific sector. Overall, it will make you a more ‘rounded’ candidate, building on your academic skills in a practical way. 

Prepare yourself with an up to date CV

The purpose of your CV is to give a full brief account including skills and achievements so make sure to create or update your current CV with relevant information.   A well-prepared CV increases your chances of being called for interview and essentially being offered a placement.  Make sure you include all relevant experience and evidence where you have applied yourself, in particular in any volunteer capacity.  

Go Local 

When finding your work placement you should think local and see what is available in your area. Some students will start their research online.  This is a good starting point and gives an indication into the number of potential schools in your catchment area.  Sometimes, your college may also have links to or have some recommendations of local schools where past students were placed.

Networking can be key 

Networking can be an invaluable way of getting your foot in the door and securing great work placement. It’s a great way of getting your name out there in local schools for any further potential jobs. Also, it can be worth asking yourself do you know anyone working in the sector you could possible chat to. 

Making contact

It may seem like a daunting task asking about work placement but sometimes it’s best to pick up the phone before sending in any details. You are not alone. Schools get dozens of inquiries every week so an informal chat might help you stand out from the crowd. Remember, work placement is of great benefit to schools with the additional help in place. 

Placement interview

Always prepare for an interview. Look at things like why you would be considered and what you can bring to the role. Know every detail of your CV, research the school, look smart and you will shine!  

Try to secure your place early

It is never too early to start thinking about work experience. Once you have decided on a course don’t delay researching any potential places for work placement. Sometimes it can take a bit of time to secure the right school but sometimes best to be an early bird having your work placement dates in place.

Keep a Diary

It is definitely worth keeping notes during your work placement.  Some courses will require that you complete an assignment or exam around your placement so great to have valuable notes to hand for when you need them. In addition the experience will be another great add on to your CV.

Say Thank You

You should always be very thankful for your placement. It can be difficult and sometimes time consuming for schools to take on students.  By showing your appreciation, you hopefully in return will get a great reference, or better still be invited back for more placements or even secure a job in the future.

All the very best in your search for the perfect placement!