Use your DofE to make you more employable
Whether you’re doing your DofE and about to choose your next sectional activity or you’re coming to the end of your DofE journey and thinking about the sort of job or career you’d like to have, here’s five ways you can use your DofE skills and experience to help make you more employable.
Plan ahead for your CV
Even if you’re not looking for work at the moment, keeping notes now could prove useful in the future. Note down anything you can put on your CV and build up a bank of stories you call tell potential employers. For example, when you’ve solved a problem, dealt with a tricky situation or demonstrated good organisational skills as part of your DofE – these can all help with future job applications and interviews. Then, when you’re ready to apply for a new role, use our CV template to help you showcase these skills and experiences, as well as your academic achievements, and make that all-important first impression count.
Clean up your social media
Before sending out your CV, think about what future employers might find if they researched you online. Search yourself on Google (and don’t forget to do an image search too). Check your privacy settings on Facebook to make sure the public can’t see all of your posts and do the same for all your other social media accounts. And don’t forget to delete any unused accounts. On the flipside, you might want to create a LinkedIn profile, which can be a useful tool for job hunting, networking and professional development. Here, you can add your DofE volunteering to either the ‘Experience’ or ‘Volunteering’ section. You could also add your DofE Award to your headline to help you stand out.
Don’t leave any gaps
If you have an idea of the industry you want to work in, do some research to find out what skills they’re looking for. What do you already have and where are your weak points? Start by thinking about all those you’ve gained by doing your DofE that are related to the type of job you’re aiming for. Once you’ve worked this out, look at the skills areas you’re still missing and how you can fill those gaps. You might want to progress to the next Award level to try out some different activities or become a DofE volunteer to learn new skills, such as fundraising, event organising or accountancy/treasury.
Try new things
The best way to find out if you would enjoy something is to give it a go. Investigate opportunities that are related to the field you want to get into. The Volunteering section is the perfect opportunity for you to do this and is a low-risk way to get a taste of something you may later want to follow as a career. Plus, it proves a lot of things to potential employers – that you’re generous with your time – and is an ideal way to fill your CV. If you would like more information on how to include your DofE volunteering in your CV then read our article.
Again, once you have an idea about the type of job you want to apply for, start to build on your industry knowledge. Take a look at the LifeZone for inside tips from leading businesses, including what attributes they look for in recruits. Follow related content on social media and keep an eye out for articles in the news which talk about that industry – the more knowledge you have, the better.
For more useful tips on how to describe the skills you’ve developed through your DofE on your CV and applications, and how to talk about them at interviews, visit the LifeZone.