Being a student isn’t cheap – even if you cut out all the fun you’re supposed to be having, all the books you’re supposed to buy, and all the important events you need to attend to keep you sane throughout your degree, it’s a lot of money. The cost of living in one of the world’s great cities, like London, is always high, and many students suffer a shortfall every month even with their student loans or bursaries.
One of the best ways to combat this shortfall is to look for a part-time job. It’s not just great for your wallet – a part-time job makes sure you’ve got vital skills and experience for the workplace – things like teamwork, discipline, reliability and references.
So how do you get one? It’s a very competitive market out there, and being a student doesn’t make it any easier. Here are a few tips and tricks to help make sure you land a job at Uni:
1. Get A Head Start
Start applying before the academic year starts. If you apply for a vacancy before all the other students arrive and start competing for it, then you have managed to avoid jumping into an overcrowded pool of applicants and put yourself at an advantage right off the bat. If you’ve got several applications sent off before the year begins, then you’re much, much more likely to get an interview than the other students who waited until they arrived in London.
It’s a balancing act, though – you don’t want to apply too far in advance, or you won’t be able to attend the interviews since you won’t be in the city yet!
2. Make Your CV As Great As It Can Be
This goes without saying, but you should comb your CV carefully, and tailor it to each application, emphasise on skills and experience that are suited to that job role.
You don’t want your tailored CVs to look copied and pasted – making it seem as though each employer got a lot of effort put into the application makes you stand out and strengthens your application to no end.
Choose a simple and minimalist template that is easy to read. If you have a hard time with the design of your CV, find inspiration in an online CV builder with resume examples to help you craft your best pitch. And always remember to proofread all you write. Make a great impression by avoiding typos and punctuation mistakes.
3. If You Had A Part-Time Job At School, Start There
One way to give yourself a leg up and make sure that your CV is relevant is to focus on the part-time job you had at school if you had one. If it’s a multi-city company with locations in London, look into being transferred – you might have an internal transfer waiting for you! Otherwise, look for something in that sector – you’ve got recent experience in that industry, so your application will be stronger than in an area you’ve never worked.
4. Volunteer To Gain Skills
If you can’t leverage existing experience, or you need to strengthen and add to it, then one of the best ways to gain experience for work is by volunteering.
It’s a means to an end since you need a job and volunteering doesn’t pay, but you can make important contacts this way, learn valuable new things, and use the experience gained there to land the job you need!
5. Be Careful With Your Social Media
In this day and age, everyone’s online, and that includes your prospective employers. One of the first things an employer will do to whittle down their pile of applications is to look through the social media of every applicant and see whether they’re a “fit” for the company.
It naturally follows that you should set your social media privacy settings up as high as they will go, or better yet, don’t post anything that might paint you in a bad light to a potential employer in the first place.
The only social media profile that you should proudly display is your LinkedIn page. Use a professional-looking photo, write a captivating summary along with your experience, education, and skills. A lot of hiring managers use LinkedIn today as their primary source for fresh candidates. Don’t miss this opportunity.
6. Use Recruitment Agencies and Tools
A recruitment agency can be a valuable tool for finding employment. Basically like a matchmaker, but with money instead of love, a recruiter will work with you to place you within a job that suits your needs and experience.
You can get in touch with them on LinkedIn or via a quick Google search, and they’ll take it from there. Or you could use recruitment tools and outsourcing websites to find work instead.
If you’re a keen writer, then sites like Copify allow you to become a freelance content writer for companies overnight – or you could find more conventional employment opportunities on a jobs board. Save The Student have an excellent Part-Time Student Jobs board that you can tailor to your area, and which already contains jobs suitable for part-time student applicants. It doesn’t get much more convenient than that!
Refer back to our first point, though – if you’re going to apply, make sure you get a head start on the other students. Those sorts of secrets never stay secret for long!
Best Part-Time Jobs for Students in London
- Bank teller
- Brand ambassador
- Delivery person
- Film or TV extra
- Fitness trainer
- IT support specialist
- Line cook
- Nursing assistant
- Personal assistant
- Resident assistant
- Restaurant server
- Retail sales associate
- Security guard
- Social media assistant
- University staff
- Virtual assistant
How to Balance Studies and a Part-Time Work
Become a master of time management and organisation. Track your tasks in an online or offline calendar. Enter your work shifts, university deadlines, exams, friends’ birthdays, and other important social events.
Don’t overburden yourself with extra shifts if it isn’t convenient for you. Be open and honest to your employer and let them know which days and hours are suitable for you. Generally, companies that hire students are flexible with their schedules.
Also, let your lecturers know that you are working part-time and don’t be afraid to ask for support if you need it.
What Are the Benefits of a Part-Time Job (Besides Money)
When you work part-time during your university years, you can earn a lot. And we don’t mean just money. There are several other benefits as well:
Once you begin to rely on yourself not on your family to sponsor your academic life, you’ll learn how to wisely spend your hard-earned money. Students who work have a higher tendency to save their money to pay rent and other necessities.
You’ll have to juggle between the university and the part-time job all through the semesters. But this is actually a good thing. Set your priorities and make plans to not miss any deadlines. Proper time management will be a useful skill that will last for life.
Find a part-time job in an area that’s interesting for you and establish connections with like-minded people in that industry. There’s a chance you’ll make valuable contacts that will help you with your career after graduation.
You will probably be part of a team where you’ll be able to collaborate with people from various backgrounds. You’ll learn to work under supervision, settle conflicts, help colleagues, make compromises, delegate tasks. All of these are valuable skills which can come in hand for group projects at the university and for your career afterwards.
Every job comes with its problems. It’s how you react to these situations that will make you stand out from the crowd. Keep a track of issues and crisis you’ve handled to impress hiring managers at interviews. They often want to hear similar stories to find out if you are a proactive and problem-solving candidate.
Job or not, your money will go much further if you choose the right accommodation for your University years – accommodation which takes care of your needs, in a great location, and that’s affordable and high-quality.
Homes for Students have a number of student accommodation options in London, with incredible features like round-the-clock security, free wifi and bills included, so your rent money goes further and you’re always able to rely on the lights and the heating, no matter how skint you might be.
Get in touch with us today to find out more about our list of London properties, or to make a reservation for the accommodation you want – our head office team are all seasoned experts who’ll be happy to answer any questions you may have, provide any information you may need, or arrange your booking for you so you can rest easy, knowing it’s all taken care of.