It is a unique opportunity for you to find out about the world of work and to meet people of various age groups. There are many benefits of work experience, some of them are listed below.
Experience of real-life working conditions.
Find out about particular jobs and careers by working with people who are doing these jobs.
Meet and learn to work with new people
Discover something about my own skills, talents and knowledge.
Understand the connections between the subjects I study at school and the skills I may need in working life.
Understand why industry, commerce and business are important for the country.
Build my confidence
Take on new responsibilities.
Prepare for the transition from school to college and work.
Before the placement
Contacting the employer
You need to contact your employer to confirm that you will be attending next week.On your Job Description form you will find a contact number and a contact name.You should call the employer and ask to speak to the person named on your form.
Have a pen, your placement details, some paper to write and this booklet with you when you call. Then find a quiet place to make the call.
Introduce yourself and say you are ringing to confirm arrangements for your placement.
Things you MUST know before your placement begins:
Where should you go on your first day e.g. reception or a particular entrance?
What time should you arrive?
What time will you finish work?
Who should you ask for when you get there?
What are you expected to wear? Do you need any special equipment?
Is there a canteen or do you need to bring a packed lunch?
Don’t forget to tell your employer if you have any health problems which may affect your work experience e.g. if you have any allergies or asthma.
Hi, please could I speak toXXXXXXX.(You might be asked why or who is calling, say your name and that you are calling from Hillside High School about work experience – they may take your number and call you back.
Hi, its (your name) from Hillside High School.I am ringing about my work experience next week and just checking if there is anything else I need to know or if there is anything I need to bring with next week.
If you would like support with contacting the employer, please speak to Mrs Conway or Mr Doran.
How will you get there?
Use a route planner on Google or Mersey travel to plan how you will get to your placement.Remember that travel expenses will not be reimbursed by school or the placement. Make sure that you know what time you need to leave to get there on time.
Work placements will expect you there on time, each day.If a bus gets you to the placement for 5 minutes before, you may need to consider an earlier bus to make sure that you will be on time if there are any delays to the bus / train.
What should I wear?
Plan what you will wear in advance.You shouldn’t need to purchase anything new. Employers will mostly expect you to look smart but you won’t have to wear business dress.Smart jeans and tops will be fine for most placements although double check with your employer in case you need to wear old clothing or clothing of a certain colour.If you do need specialist footwear such as safety boots and don’t have any, please contact Ms Conway in school as soon as possible.
During the Placement
Make sure you know who to report to and where you should go on your first day. It may be a good ideato take a packed lunch which will allows you to check out places nearby where you can purchase lunch in future.
Illness / Absence
If you are not able to attend your placement due to absence your parents need to contact school in the normal way to inform us of your absence.They should also contact the employer to let them now you will not be attending. Make sure that you have the contact details of the employer on your phone or written somewhere at home.
Social Media / Phones
Most work places would expect you to only use your phone during your allocated breaks.Unless otherwise explained, your phone should be in your bag or in a zipped pocket and you should not use your phone unless given permission to do so.It is not acceptable to take your phone out and send messages / check social media.If you are unsure, speak to your supervisor. You may be asked to leave your placement if you continue to break this rule. If you are in a public facing role, imagine how you would feel as a customer if an employee was on their phone in front of you instead of doing their job.
Social media forms part of day-to-day life, and it’s important that you consider how you use social media in the workplace.
Anything you post online can be found and read by anyone – your work experience manager, a family member, the media, competitors of the employer and your future employers. Once something is posted on the internet, it can prove impossible to remove it altogether.
If you make a mistake and post something you shouldn’t have, delete the post then inform your manager. It’s easier to address any issues straight away, rather than let them develop.
Companies have a responsibility to ensure they follow certain rules and regulations, and client confidentiality is very important.
You should not share or expose anything about a company’s clients or customers, as this could result in financial and reputational damage for the business.
The best advice is: Before posting on social media something that relates to your work experience placement, ask your supervisor first.
Dos and Don’ts
Doact professionally. Stick to prescribed breaks
Don’tcomplain of being bored.If you have nothing to do, ask the employer if there is anything else you can help with
Don’t slouch, roll your eyes, be aggressive or rude to employees or public. If you demonstrate a bad attitude towards others then you may be asked to leave the placement.Businesses rely on customers and if you are rude they may lose that custom.Be prepared for no second chances if this happens.
Do expect to stay until the end of the working day.
Dobe realistic about what tasks you will be doing. There is likely to be an amount of routine involved and not all of the tasks you do will be interesting.
Doask what else you can do if you finish a task, don’t just wait until you are given another one.
Doask employees how they got where they are and what qualifications they needed.
Dotalk to your supervisor, or contact the school or placement organiser if you have any concerns.
Do ask if there is anything that you would like to know about or if there is something that you would like to see or do.
Health and Safety
Employers are responsible for making sure the work place is safe, but employees (including you) have a duty as well to take proper care.
Take care to:
READ all instructions carefully
LISTEN to any advice given to you
WEAR any safety equipment and clothing you are given.
All work places have some hazards. A hazard is something that can cause harm, illness or damage to health or property. The employer has a responsibility to control hazards so that you and other employees are safe but you also have responsibilities which are to:
Act responsibly and not do anything to endanger others
Be tidy in your work
Follow the Health & Safety rules and signs
Report anything you feel is dangerous such as spillages.
You should have a Health & Safety briefing at the beginning of your first day during which you will be told what to do if you have an accident, who the first aider is, what to do if there is a fire and if you need to use any protective clothing or equipment.
Even if all of the rules are carefully followed, accidents sometimes happen at work. If you have an accident you should tell your supervisor. You should also record it below and let your teacher know about it when you return to school.