National Careers Week – Top careers tips and resources | NCFE

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National Careers Week – Top careers tips and resources

Simon Bell Simon Bell Founder and Director of CareerMap

If you’re just starting out in your career, it can feel like a daunting time. But don’t panic! There are lots of opportunities available and there is no right or wrong path – it’s all about doing what is best for you.

Simon Bell, Founder and Director of Careermap, has put together a list of top career tips and resources to help you navigate your options and the world of work.

1. Understand your skills and career goals

When starting out in your career, it’s important to understand what your skills are and how they relate to your career goals. Knowing these will give you the opportunity to shine when applying for further training, a job or university. Try writing down your skills, identify a time that you've put each skill into practice, and how these relate to your career goals.

2. Use Labour Market Information (LMI)

Labour Market Information shows what is happening in the jobs market. It focuses on industries and areas of employment that are growing and declining. It also explores skills, career pathways, typical pay rates, work patterns and progression routes.

So why should you use Labour Market Information? The world of work can be confusing and LMI enables you to get a clear picture of the career landscape. This supports career decision making and improves the transition from education to work. The LMI for All portal provides high quality, reliable labour market information (LMI) to inform careers decisions.

3. Be prepared to step outside of your comfort zone

I like to think of careers as zigzags – they no longer follow a straight line, and a job for life is a thing of the past. If you don’t like what you’re doing or simply just want a change, go for it!

Take me as an example, I started my career working as an Aviation Technician in the Royal Air Force. Now, I’m the Director of one of the UK’s leading websites offering expert advice, support and guidance for people looking for apprenticeships, university degrees, graduate schemes, adult learner courses and jobs.

Don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone and try new things.

4. Do what you enjoy

And last but certainly not least, be sure to do what you enjoy. Have you ever heard the saying ‘Choose a job you love, and you'll never have to work a day in your life’? Working in a role you enjoy will feel more like a choice, rather than a way to make ends meet. You’ll spend a large proportion of your life at work, so it’s important to spend it doing what you’re passionate about, giving purpose and meaning to your work.

Useful resources

You don’t have to do it alone! Here are some useful career resources to help you get a head start on your career path:

Careermap

Careermap is an online careers portal with live apprenticeship, courses and graduate schemes.

Careermap also produces Careermag for School Leavers, Careermag for Parents, Careermag for Graduates and Careermag for Lifelong Learning. So, whether you’re considering your next steps after education, thinking about a career change or are currently on the job hunt, articles from experts will share insights into the labour market, interview tips, techniques and support for application success. Industry leaders break down the diversity of career opportunities and pathways available, while helping you to discover your employability and transferrable skills.

These sites all give you the opportunity to meet with employers, industry leaders and training providers to get your burning questions answered by the experts and hiring managers.

Apprentice Nation

Apprentice Nation enables you to find out what apprenticeships really are, learn work-ready skills, watch your favourite artists and unlock exclusive rewards.

Association of Apprentices

Association of Apprentices provide the social and broader elements often missing from apprenticeship programmes, with access to advice and guidance which supports life-long career development, and a lifetime of professional networks.

Get the Jump

Whether you know what your next steps will be or you’re still figuring it out, Get the Jump provides a wealth of information to help you to understand the work and study choices available to you.

Youth Employment UK

Youth Employment UK offers free Young Professional Training to 14-24 year olds who are looking to train their skills. They’ll help you to boost your life and work skills.

About the author: Simon Bell is the Founder and Director of Careermap, one of the UK’s leading websites offering expert advice, support and guidance for people looking for apprenticeships, university degrees, graduate schemes, adult learner courses and jobs. Simon is passionate about effectively supporting people across the UK, helping to connect people to thousands of new opportunities every day.

Don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone and try new things.

Simon Bell, Founder and Director of CareerMap
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