You might think that the only point of doing work experience is to ‘tick a box’. You probably think you’ll just sit there twiddling your thumbs, or be given a stack of 2,000 envelopes to stuff, stamp and send. Although some work experience does involve doing menial tasks, it can still be very important. Some work experience placements might even give you the opportunity to take on some really interesting and challenging responsibilities. How meaningful each placement is depends on the set up and what is agreed from the outset.
The experience of being in an environment that is not school, seeing how different organisations work and how teams operate is invaluable. Your work placement doesn’t have to be in the sector/careers/job that you expect to be doing for the rest of your life. It is about seeing the big picture and developing real work, work ready young people. This is important as there is no such thing as a career for life. Most people who leave school, will have up to 7 different careers, with up to 40 different job roles in their working life. Any experience that shows how dynamic and adaptable you are is worth it.
10 Reasons to complete work experience:
- Research has shown young people are more likely to be successful in their job hunt if they have done some good work experience
- If you haven’t got a clue what career you want to do work experience is a perfect way to sample all the career options out there. It’s a way of exploring different jobs without actually committing to anything. Finding out you don’t like or don’t suit a particular job or working environment is just as valuable as confirming your aspirations.
- It’s the best way to get a real sense of your chosen industry. You’ll get to speak to employees and ask them questions. You’ll then be able to make informed choices
- Doing work experience shows passion and interest.
- Work placements can increase motivation and effort, they can provide a real goal and realise ambition
- You can gain the skills to thrive in the work place, in a non-threatening situation, you can learn the do’s and don’ts of employment
- It’ll help you identify your own skills and perhaps even highlight the areas that you might want to work on
- You might secure your own job – part-time, or that dream apprenticeship.
- You will be starting to build a valuable bank of contacts for when you are ready to gain serious employment
- You get to enhance your CV with experiences beyond school, something that will really make you stand out among your peers
[source: adapted from allaboutcareers.com]
Year 10 work experience really is the chance to put all of the learning from Build my Skills into action. It is a chance for students to start thinking about where they want to be after year 11 and further.
Details of work experience, the placement provider forms and advice on how to organise a placement can be found via the Your Future – KEVI Careers page.