When you’ve got exams to revise for and essays to write the last thing you want to be doing is spending every minute you’re not in university at work. When it comes to finding work during your time studying, it’s important that you find a job that is flexible – a job that will work around your commitments. After all, what’s the point in messing up your studies all for the sake of a job that you’ll be leaving in a couple of year’s time?
The following advice was provided to us by the editor of StudentMoney.co.uk and explains how you can find flexible jobs which to alongside your degree.
What is flexibility?
Flexibility is where employers recognise that you have commitments and build your work schedule around them. This might mean that for the majority of each semester you work evenings only – because you’ll be in university most days anyway. It may also mean that during exam season you only have to work one day a week – or you don’t have to work at all. It may all seem a little farfetched, but there are companies out there that will build your schedule around you.
Working as a student definitely comes with many merits – but it can come with many drawbacks too if your employer refuses to acknowledge the fact that you have a degree to study for. For example, my sister recently had to quit her job working at Dominos in Manchester because the late night shifts (11pm – 4am) kept interrupting with her studies the next day. On the other hand, my friend Matt works at a sports betting company in Leeds where he’s more than happy to work the light night shift and then go to University during the day.
Increasing your chances of finding a flexible job
Whilst there are lots of companies out there who are willing to offer flexibility to students, many of which are listed at studentmoney.co.uk, there are many more that won’t. If you need flexibility in your student job here are our three top tips for you to bear in mind:
- Be truthful: When applying for a job or in the interview phase make sure you’re honest about your scheduling requirements. It may put some employers off, but at least it won’t cause trouble down the road when you drop the bombshell that you can only work X, Y and Z hours.
- Be the best: If you prove to an employer that you’re the best person for the job, they will hire you regardless of your flexibility requirements. The better you make the case for you being the best person for the job, the better your chances of landing that job. Flexibility is just one variable that employers look at – it’s not the only thing they consider.
- Find out where your friends work: Working with your university friends may not appeal to you, but if you get an idea for the kind of places they work, your job hunt will be much easier. Friends who already have jobs will have flexible scheduling arrangements – have a look at the companies and sectors they work in, and see if you can secure a job for yourself in that area.
Working during your time as a student is a great thing to do – it helps you to reduce your reliance on student loans, and if you play your cards right you may well end up leaving university with a nice pile of cash behind you. There’s no point in damaging your chances of obtaining a top degree by working day and night because your employer has imposed an unforgiving schedule on you however – so before you go taking a job make sure the employer offers flexibility to suit you.