One of those things that can truly help you increase your chances of employment is volunteering. Whether you are looking for a job for the first time or have been working for a while, volunteering will be a competitive edge in the eyes of an employer.
Volunteering can help you gain work experience without having the pressure of learning a new skill or perfecting existing skills in a set amount of time. Here are some ways in which volunteering might just be able to help you land your next job.
1. Developing multicultural competencies
Volunteering abroad will give you an opportunity to immerse yourself in another culture, and develop multicultural competencies. If you wish to land a job in an international company, you can assume that you will be working with people from diverse backgrounds, and prior experience working and communicating in a multi-cultural environment will be an asset.
In the eyes of your employer, your volunteer experience will show that you are a ‘citizen of the world’, are curious and that you enjoy learning new things. Volunteering abroad will also help open your mind to workplace standards and ethics and can help you become more productive at your new job – remember to mention this to a potential employer.
2. Building a network
Currently, over 13 million people in Canada volunteer in different organizations. Through volunteering, people of all ages come together to work towards a better future. It’s a great opportunity to meet new people and expand your network of contacts. The volunteers you work with will get to know your values and work ethics and may be able to refer you to, or recommend you for a position, or your network could lead you to a potential employer.
3. Developing skills
Volunteering can help you develop a wide range of skills you might not be able to develop in a regular job. In many cases, volunteers don’t just have one task in an organization, so you will need to be flexible and learn how to handle a variety of different tasks in order to be able to help out in as many areas as possible. The skills you learn might be helpful, or even crucial, to landing your next job.
4. Appearing trustworthy in the eyes of your future employer
Volunteering is a selfless act, where you devote your time and effort for a good cause, without expecting anything in return. Whether you are helping homeless people, working with an NGO on environmental issues, or volunteering in a non-profit student organization, you are giving up your time in order to help reach a goal that you believe in.
On your resume, not only will you appear as someone who cares about and is engaged with the world around them, but also someone who is willing to devote time to work on an issue without expecting payment in return. Future employers will think you are trustworthy.
For maximum impact, you’ll need to communicate the value of your volunteering experience in your resume. If you are looking for translation services abroad for your resume, here’s a translation service you can use.
5. Explore different career options
Not sure what type of job you want to do? Volunteering can give you exposure to a wide variety of job fields and positions that you might not have considered before. It gives you the opportunity to see what type of work you enjoy, before committing to a full-time job in that area.
On completion of your volunteer placement, you’ll have both work experience in a specific field, and new skills, which will look great on your resume and make you a better, and more ‘well rounded’ candidate for a job.
A good reference from your volunteer supervisor will open more doors than you can imagine and potentially allow you to land the job of your dreams.
A fuller resume can help you become competitive in the job market
Volunteering adds substance to your resume and can increase your chances of getting a job. Future employers will appreciate that you have taken the time and effort to support a cause that you believe in.
Volunteering can develop your network of contacts, and some of these contacts could end up playing an important role in your professional career. At the end of the day, all you have to do is find a cause that interests you, and start volunteering for them. While you are making a positive impact on those around you, you will also be increasing your job opportunities. There really isn’t a better opportunity than that!
Dina Indelicato is a blogger enthusiast and freelance writer. She is always open to research about new topics and gain new experiences to share with her readers.