Working Whilst Studying

Firstly, do you actually need a job?

So you might be thinking “if I didn’t need a job, I wouldn’t be reading this”. But before reading on, it’s definitely worth asking yourself first if a part-time job is right for you at this moment in time.

Establish exactly why it is that you want a part time job. Are you doing it purely for the dollar, or is it to bulk out your CV or even just to meet new people, perhaps? Or all of the above?

If you’re doing it just for the money, make sure you work out what your monthly budget is first. Sitting down to work out what your incomings and outgoings will give you a clear idea of how much of a shortfall you need to make up.

You might even find you don’t need a job after all, and just a few small money-making tricks here and there will be enough to bring in some pocket money.

It’s also worth pointing out that whilst juggling a job at uni will look great on your CV, getting some temporary work experience or getting involved in some extracurricular activities can do the same trick, without you having to commit long term.

It’s crucial to sit down and work out how much time you have outside of uni that you can commit to a job. Can your timetable really accommodate a part-time job? Most universities would advise no more than 15 hours a week during term time.

Getting The Right Balance

While it’s totally understandable that you might need some extra cash, don’t put it ahead of your studies. It can be easy to fall into the trap of working all the hours you can, often to the detriment of your degree.

Before committing yourself to a position, have a talk with your potential employer about how many hours you can do per week, and what your availability realistically looks like.

Flexibility can be pretty crucial when it comes to working and studying simultaneously, so it’s important to know your boss has your back. Especially when exam period comes around. You need to know the company you’ll be working for understands just how important your studies are.

So where to start?

As with most money-making opportunities, sometimes the hardest part of finding a good part-time jobs is knowing where to look.  Here is out top 5 points to help you get started!

  1. Search online: It may seem obvious but knowing exactly where to look online is key! Sometimes the best place to look can be on company websites or on their social media, for their vacancies. You can also sign up to job sites so they notify you when positions pop up in your area.
  2. Try this search tool from Save the Student, they claim it is one of the best around! UCAS also have some handy tips.
  3. University schemes: A lot of universities will organise job fairs throughout the year, giving you a chance to meet employers directly, so make sure to get out of bed on that day. Many unis also have a JobShop service too, and will hire people directly to work in their shops, bars and on open days.
  4. Ask around: If you’re lucky enough to have friends or family working at a company you like, they might be able to give you a heads up when a new opening is coming – and hopefully put in a good word!
  5. Walk in and ask: Weirdly enough, when it comes to finding part-time jobs, just walking into a place with your CV and asking if there are any jobs going tends to be most effective. It might make you squirm at first, but once you’ve got past the first couple, it’ll be a doddle!
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