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Limited experience = life failure?

Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
If you don't work alongside your degree are you denying yourself valuable work experience?

I'm at Manchester Uni and just realised when I graduate I won't ever have had a proper job. It's not normal?

I've decided to get a job this year.

Will employers care about part time studenty jobs in bars and shops, and will they focus more on the degree? Or is stuff like that vital to show you're plasticity etc?

I didn't get one because I wanted to focus on my studies but I'm starting to get depressed and feel behind everyone else now. I'm so desperate to be successful. Now I'll have to work in my final year and probably fail as a consequence!

Comments

  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Although retail experience will help, the quality of your degree is more important IMHO.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I hope so. Will employers ask personal questions in interviews demanding reasons why?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    It depends what you want to do.

    If you are after a vocational career, then not doing work experience in that field during vacations does put you at a disadvantage. That much is true.

    Relax and chill a bit more, you sound like you're on the way to a nervous breakdown tbh. If you don't need the money then concentrate on your studies, three months working in Tesco doesn't make any difference to a CV. Only vocational work placements make a difference to someone's employability in the long term.

    Having previous employment experience, particularly office-based experience, does it make it easier to find temping jobs though.

    If you don't have experience its because you've been studying. That's perfectly obvious to any employer.

    If you don't have experience you may find it harder to get employment, but that's because experience makes you easier to employ, as you have more idea of what you're doing and need less training. It's not enough of a difference to worry about, really, unless you're after getting a training contract with a magic circle law firm or an investment bank.

    Don't ignore your studies for a job in Tesco. IT's not worth it if you can survive without the wages.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Doubt it, if the degree is of a good standard then it will look like you've put all your efforts into your studies.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    If the job interferes with your degree, quit it. You have the rest of your life to gain work experience, your degree is more important at the moment and you cant go back to improve it once you have left. Work experience and jobs are always there when your done with uni
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Kermit wrote:
    Don't ignore your studies for a job in Tesco. It's not worth it if you can survive without the wages.

    Thats very true, you can always get some crappy office temp type experience after uni during the summer when temp admin jobs are relatively easy to come by.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I got told by a family friend who is in charge of employing graduates that unless its a degree specialised for a particular career such as medicine or architecture then most graduate leave with very similar skills. The ones who stand out are able to draw on jobs they have had (even if its just in tesco) or volunteer work that they have done.

    As long as you've had some kind of work experience even if its not a 'proper' job then you should be ok.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    in all honesty, your degree only matters for the acedemic side of things.
    getting a job nad pursuing other extra curricular activities like sport are essential in developing into a well rounded individual. how on earth have you managed to finance uni so far without a job? whatever work you decide to do helps you develop lots of key skills that employers will be looking for... which your degree cannot. and when you go out there into the job market, you will be competing agianst lots of other individuals who have had experience in different settings and doing differnt things... the job goes to the best applicant. and nowerdays most poeple enter the job market with a degree. your other experiences are what makes you stand out from the crowd... so yes employers will care... and it is VERY valuable. :)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    bongbudda wrote:
    Thats very true, you can always get some crappy office temp type experience after uni during the summer when temp admin jobs are relatively easy to come by.
    Honestly... At least where I am you don't have a hope in hell of getting office work temporarily unless you have experience. Nowhere will take you on.

    Universities offer placements during the summer apparently. Voluntary work looks good too.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Honestly... At least where I am you don't have a hope in hell of getting office work temporarily unless you have experience. Nowhere will take you on.

    Strange, in London as long as you can type, can present yourself well and know Office properly you can normally get some sort of office odd job coffee boy type temp work. It might be different elsewhere though.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Honestly... At least where I am you don't have a hope in hell of getting office work temporarily unless you have experience. Nowhere will take you on.

    That depends on how realistically you look for office temping work.
    Type "data entry" into a search engine and you'll get a job with minimal experience- try and be a wages clerk and you won't.

    If you're after temping expect to be a dogsbody, and choose your jobs realistically. If you can spell and speak you'll get a job as a data entry clerk.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Kermit wrote:
    That depends on how realistically you look for office temping work.
    Type "data entry" into a search engine and you'll get a job with minimal experience- try and be a wages clerk and you won't.

    If you're after temping expect to be a dogsbody, and choose your jobs realistically. If you can spell and speak you'll get a job as a data entry clerk.
    Nope, I went to all the agencies in Wrexham and they said I'd need experience for anything including secretary work and data entry. They said the only thing I could possibly get that never comes up anyway is office juniour. It's the same with shop work, you need experience.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    You'd need experience for secretarial work, but not for data entry. Or not much, anyway, a few weeks and you'd be in.

    It must be that Wrexham is only small, and they can afford to be that bit more choosy.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I have an interview at Sainsbury's on Monday - so hopefully I'll be able to get some experience.

    As for things at Uni - well I've been getting involved in mentorship and I'm in charge of events for the musical society so it's not like I sit there eating crisps and doing nothing ;-)

    For a CASUAL interview, is a shirt, trousers and shoes sufficient????? :S
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    How is Manchester uni just out of interest?

    It's the one I think I should have gone for. Due to start at Exeter at the end of the month and not feeling enthuastic about it. Then again, I live in Exeter anyway.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I'm very happy to have chosen Manchester. It's the biggest density of students in the country and I love all the people.

    However, it's a very big city and it is quite expensive so you'll probably save some money in Exeter, and be in familiar surroundings/close to home for visits.

    You'll have a good time wherever, but I always wanted a big big city. I thought of London but it's too pricey at this stage in life. Manchester for me, is a good enough alternative!

    Good luck for Exeter Uni.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    bongbudda wrote:
    Strange, in London as long as you can type, can present yourself well and know Office properly you can normally get some sort of office odd job coffee boy type temp work. It might be different elsewhere though.


    oh i tried at a few agencies, including the apparantly better ones like reed, and they were like "if you havent got referencable experience we wont give you it"
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    This is madness. I haven't even got any college qualifications, and I managed to get both office and shop work with no preivous experience - or qualifiactions apart from bog-standard GCSE. I agree with Kermit here - there are jobs available for everyone if you look hard enough.

    Good luck on your interview Alan - let me know which Sainsburys it is and I'll come buy something. ;)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Well I have just graduated uni and I am in the same boat more or less.

    In the run up to uni they said the imprtant thing is your degree, that gets you up the ladder, better chances and all that. Then when your in uni they say, not untill late in uni mind you, that you need work experience an dlife experience to get a job.

    My mate went the uni career centre and they said to him he should have spent a few years doing telesales work. they reckon all employers go for that and they tell the tutors and everything but they never passed it on to us.

    I had bad luck getting work when I was younger, coulnt even get the standard saturday job. I have eventully scraped together some work experience over the years, my last job was 6 months last year at a pub in town. I quit coz I didn't like it and wanted to concentrate on the last year of uni.

    Now I have graduated and finding a job is tough, i'm applying all over though theres very few jobs that I would want to do and am even near qualified for. Lots of them want 5 years or more of experience or specific expereince which you just can't get.

    Also, now all the careers advice said you had to joing all these socieites in ui and run them, like that bloke up there said. Wel There were hardly any societyes I wanted to join and the few I did were fairly rubbish and I didnt bother much with them. Plus, how can 30,000 students all be presidents of a society etc?? Also, why does being ina sports team make u a well rounded person? Why sould someone who played football and was a complet a-hole get a job and me not just coz I didnt join a sporst team. i wanted to joina a few sporst things but 1) they were mega expensive and 2) I applied to one in the first year and they never got back to me so I thought why bother.

    So now I have left uni I was looking into work abroad schemes and volunteering with animals aborad but cant do either of them coz 1) if u want the work aborad shcemes u have to be a student, not a graduate and 2) the working with animals ones, supposedly volunteer, all cost thousands of pounds a week for you to do. You pay them thousands a week to work.

    Its not good stuff at all.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    oh i tried at a few agencies, including the apparantly better ones like reed, and they were like "if you havent got referencable experience we wont give you it"

    Dont try the larger ones, they can afford to be more picky. There are always smaller local ones where you can get admin or data entry work.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I've worked for both Reed and Brook Street, and I live in London... I've never had a problem with getting work, but if you want to work for a bigger agency = better experience, more money. Then your computer skills must be up to scratch, most places give typing tests and computer skills tests as well as training. But I agree, if you really are desperate for work, then you will be able to find it. However, I don't intend on doing admin/temp work for the rest of my life, this is just a means to an end.
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