When we think about opportunities to work, we tend to think in terms of whether they are full time, part time and how much they pay. We give very little thought to voluntary work, and yet this can sometimes be the most valuable of all.
Of course, everyone needs to earn money and if you are in search of a paid position so you can pay your bills, you wouldn’t opt for a voluntary job in place of a paid one.
However voluntary work can be exceedingly valuable while you are on that job search. Here are some good reasons why voluntary work could end up being the trigger for getting a paid job.
Are you looking for a job in a totally new career? If you feel your previous work history isn’t good enough to help you make inroads into your new career, consider voluntary work as a way in instead. The good thing about this is you will be able to find out more about the career you want and gain some experience before applying for new positions and going for relevant interviews.
Imagine two people show up for a job interview. Neither have experience of doing the job they have applied for.
One has spent the previous four months sitting at home while the other has spent most of that time gaining experience in a voluntary role in that sector.
It’s not just a case of gaining experience in that job either. If you are willing to go out and work for nothing but experience and self fulfilment, it sends a very strong message to any potential employers who interview you.
Even if the voluntary work doesn’t happen to fall within your area of expertise, most employers will be impressed to see people who have engaged in voluntary work of some kind. If your volunteering is in the same line of work you want to get into, it looks even better.
It shows willing and determination to start learning and be of use in that field. As you can see, it is always worth considering adding voluntary work into your day. It gives you a greater sense of self worth, adds to your experience and also makes you more employable.
In times when there are potentially hundreds of people chasing each and every job on the market, it makes sense to ensure you make yourself as employable as possible. This is one of the best ways to do it. So why not start looking for voluntary opportunities at the same time as looking for paid employment? You might be surprised how effective it can be in helping your job search.