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Topic: The Dreaded Job-Hunt  (Read 3361 times)

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Re: The Dreaded Job-Hunt
« Reply #15 on: February 18, 2019, 05:00:21 PM »
You'll see from others, once they have some job experience in the UK the offers for better work come flying in. The hostile environment has hit the employment area hard and made them very weary of immigrants. Showing you can work in the UK will only be a positive even if it's a temporary job!

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This is what I'm hoping for!  I also see a lot of jobs asking you to have a full UK driving licence, even for office admin... unfortunately, while I *can* currently drive using my American licence, plus international permit, I can't exchange my Japanese licence for a UK one until I've been here 180 days, which will be mid-May.  So I feel like my lack of a UK licence is also working against me, for some jobs.  (I should count my blessings, though... I'm lucky to have the Japanese licence, as it will enable me to get a UK one without taking the driving test.)


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Re: The Dreaded Job-Hunt
« Reply #16 on: February 18, 2019, 05:01:17 PM »
When I worked for Boots, they were pretty flexible - I was a vacation worker at first, and started off on the main tills, then moved to pharmacy, then did a summer on the photo counter, then alternated between pharmacy, operations (picking stock, stocking shelves), and the cash office. When I went back to them in the vacations I ended up just working in whichever department needed someone at the time.


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Thanks for the info!  I will definitely apply to some Boots locations!
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Re: The Dreaded Job-Hunt
« Reply #17 on: February 18, 2019, 05:06:00 PM »
I'd 100% still apply to the ones that say you need a full UK driving license. For you, it's not the fact that you can't drive or won't have a full UK driving license. You might even find that by the time you've gone through the interviewing process and get a job, it'll be close enough to that time anyways (it's only a few months away). I don't think you should let that outline deter you from applying. It might cause an issue for some but I doubt it'll be a show stopper for most if you're the right candidate outside of that.
My, how time flies....

* Married in the US and applied for first spousal visa August 2013
* Moved to the UK on said visa October 2013
* FLR(M) applied for  May 2016. Biometrics requested June 2016. Approval given July 2016.
* ILR applied for January 2019 (using priority processing). Approved February 2019.
* Citizenship applied for May  2019
* Citizenship approved on July 4th 2019
* Ceremony conducted on August 28th 2019

'Mommy, Wow! I'm a legit Brit now!'


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Re: The Dreaded Job-Hunt
« Reply #18 on: February 18, 2019, 05:06:20 PM »
Can appreciate why you feel that way but I would prefer to have the feedback just because it can help show you what areas you could work on developing. It's unlikely to be feedback about you on a personal level/how you presented yourself, it's more likely to be "you didn't have as much experience in xyz area as another candidate" or something like that and it would give you something you could take away and improve upon. If you don' know what you need to develop, there's a chance it will continue to bite you in the bum with every interview when you could nip it in the bud now. If it's down to lack of experience in a certain topic, you can do free online courses (as an example) to improve your knowledge and skill-set to look more desirable for the next interview you get. But everybody is different, so can appreciate if you'd rather not (but I'm surprised they didn't automatically offer this).

How many jobs have you applied for so far and when did you start applying? If this is only the first one you've applied for, I would most definitely be kinder to yourself and would kindly just advise in future not to put too many eggs in one basket. Would recommend applying to many jobs that interest you and attend as many interviews as you can as you'd rather have too many offers than waiting to hear back from a job before applying for another (things move realllyy slowly over here with the hiring process and it honestly can just be a numbers game).

I started applying in January.  You're right, I did make the mistake of waiting to hear back from the first interview before seriously continuing the job hunt.  I won't make that mistake again!  I'm currently applying to everything I feel is reasonable.  It's just so time-consuming, even doing it online... I feel like my whole days are consumed.  (Which is as it should be, I guess.  Make job-hunting your full-time job, right?)  I'm hoping to have at least 50 applications done by the end of this week.  (That's including the ones I've already applied to.)  My goal is to spend at least 5-6 hours a day working on job-hunting.  More if possible. 

Will sell soul for Duke's Mayonnaise.


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Re: The Dreaded Job-Hunt
« Reply #19 on: February 18, 2019, 05:11:18 PM »
I'd 100% still apply to the ones that say you need a full UK driving license. For you, it's not the fact that you can't drive or won't have a full UK driving license. You might even find that by the time you've gone through the interviewing process and get a job, it'll be close enough to that time anyways (it's only a few months away). I don't think you should let that outline deter you from applying. It might cause an issue for some but I doubt it'll be a show stopper for most if you're the right candidate outside of that.

Yes, I think you're right.  At first I was briefly explaining the situation in cover letters, but now I'm just saying "fully licenced to drive in the UK."  (I haven't actually driven here yet, though.  I'm not worried about driving on the left; used to do that in Japan.  But man... the roundabout road system is entirely different from the road system in the US or Japan.  My husband drives a car which belongs to his mother, and I'm not yet insured to drive it, so I've not had the chance to practice... ugh, another hurdle to jump!) 
Will sell soul for Duke's Mayonnaise.


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Re: The Dreaded Job-Hunt
« Reply #20 on: February 18, 2019, 05:25:23 PM »
I started applying in January.  You're right, I did make the mistake of waiting to hear back from the first interview before seriously continuing the job hunt.  I won't make that mistake again!  I'm currently applying to everything I feel is reasonable.  It's just so time-consuming, even doing it online... I feel like my whole days are consumed.  (Which is as it should be, I guess.  Make job-hunting your full-time job, right?)  I'm hoping to have at least 50 applications done by the end of this week.  (That's including the ones I've already applied to.)  My goal is to spend at least 5-6 hours a day working on job-hunting.  More if possible.

I wouldn’t worry too much about not getting anything yet - it’s only been a few weeks so far, and job hunting in the UK can take ages. If you can, I would also look into doing some unpaid volunteering, as that can help you get some UK experience and references on your CV.

I got stuck applying for graduate jobs in the recession, and even though I was a UK citizen with 2 UK masters-level degrees, and 10 years of UK work experience, it still took me 2 years to find a job... because no one was hiring graduates.

Luckily I had just been taken back as a permanent member of staff at Boots, so at least I had a job... so I worked in retail at just above minimum wage until I finally managed to secure my current job (which took 2 years from first interview for it to finally starting the job!).


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Re: The Dreaded Job-Hunt
« Reply #21 on: February 18, 2019, 06:41:57 PM »
I started applying in January.  You're right, I did make the mistake of waiting to hear back from the first interview before seriously continuing the job hunt.  I won't make that mistake again!  I'm currently applying to everything I feel is reasonable.  It's just so time-consuming, even doing it online... I feel like my whole days are consumed.  (Which is as it should be, I guess.  Make job-hunting your full-time job, right?)  I'm hoping to have at least 50 applications done by the end of this week.  (That's including the ones I've already applied to.)  My goal is to spend at least 5-6 hours a day working on job-hunting.  More if possible.

If I could make a suggestion? How about setting yourself a goal of how many you want to do a day or break it down by how many you want to do in the mornings and evenings (even just a set amount of time a day). What if you did 2 or 3 in the morning (and save the others you're interested in that you come across) and then step away to do other things and decompress then come back in the afternoon to do another 2 or 3 applications. Also, what if you start saving your responses on a word doc that you find yourself putting on every application? Just things like previous job experience/responsibilities (which find frustrating because it's all on my CV!) then you can just copy and paste across and it will save you time in the long run.

5 to 6 hours is a LOT of time to spend per day applying. It's great to spend a lot of time looking for and applying to jobs....but for your own sanity, I would not recommend 5 or 6 hours a day. I'd suggest maybe spending one good day compiling app the jobs you can see and ordering them on a spreadsheet with links to the role/listing and application closure date (then you also know what you have/haven;t applied for yet). Maybe do that once a week or every other week to keep the list fresh. Then, the rest of the days, only apply to a handful of roles a day (as mentioned above). You need to find a happy medium so you don't get too overloaded and stressed out as that won't help you think clearly when doing these applications. As you've only been looking for a month and a bit, I certainly wouldn't be hard on yourself. If you let this stress you out and get to you now, if you find Brexit or lack of UK work experience is making it more difficult to get a job sooner rather than later, you are absolutely going to burn yourself out and stress yourself into a very low place mentally (and that won't help). I know it's easier said than done when telling somebody not to stress or worry, but seriously. Everybody here will vouch that looking since January honestly is no poor reflection on you that makes you undesirable. Sometimes it's that people aren't even properly back from their holidays to look through their recruiting until the 2nd and 3rd weeks of Jan. Also, businesses are getting closer to "end of the financial year" so are using up the rest of their budgets and seeing where the gaps in their employment are so it's likely you'll start seeing even more roles being listed as people work out their FY2019 budget out.

Yes, I think you're right.  At first I was briefly explaining the situation in cover letters, but now I'm just saying "fully licenced to drive in the UK."  (I haven't actually driven here yet, though.  I'm not worried about driving on the left; used to do that in Japan.  But man... the roundabout road system is entirely different from the road system in the US or Japan.  My husband drives a car which belongs to his mother, and I'm not yet insured to drive it, so I've not had the chance to practice... ugh, another hurdle to jump!) 

I don't honestly think you need to address it at all until you get somebody to speak to you about an interview if I'm honest. Yes you are omitting the truth a bit on an application but it's not illegal and you don't intend on wasting somebody's time. If a recruiter phones you, just mention to them that you put xyz on the application but that's because you are fully licensed to drive in the UK and will be getting the UK-specific license as soon as you can swap your Japanese license across (but you're unable to at the moment because of timelines set by the government). I would try to get insured and get out on the roads ASAP. From my experience, the longer I put it off, the harder it became to just get out and do it.



My, how time flies....

* Married in the US and applied for first spousal visa August 2013
* Moved to the UK on said visa October 2013
* FLR(M) applied for  May 2016. Biometrics requested June 2016. Approval given July 2016.
* ILR applied for January 2019 (using priority processing). Approved February 2019.
* Citizenship applied for May  2019
* Citizenship approved on July 4th 2019
* Ceremony conducted on August 28th 2019

'Mommy, Wow! I'm a legit Brit now!'


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Re: The Dreaded Job-Hunt
« Reply #22 on: February 18, 2019, 08:56:37 PM »
I started in the photo department at Boots and now I'm being trained as a pharmacy dispenser. It was fairly easy to move over, they actually approached me about taking the new position. I didn't even consider working in the pharmacy as I wasn't keen on doing it when I was in management at Walgreens.

But here in the UK,  I don't have to worry about being shot by a drug seeking patient.  We don't tolerate any kind of abuse from patients in our store.

I also interviewed internally for an optical consultant trainee job but they pulled it from being a full time contract to a part time contract so it wasn't the right position for me.

A couple of the optical consultants left and now work a cushy Mon-Fri job at the hospital. And several of our former dispensers work in the hospital pharmacy or private pharmacies.

And the pay isn't horrible but it isn't the greatest either but it's a starting point that will train you for a new career for free.

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Re: The Dreaded Job-Hunt
« Reply #23 on: February 18, 2019, 11:39:00 PM »
If I could make a suggestion? How about setting yourself a goal of how many you want to do a day or break it down by how many you want to do in the mornings and evenings (even just a set amount of time a day). What if you did 2 or 3 in the morning...



Maybe I was overambitious about getting so many apps in this week.  Yes, I think you're right.  I've just sat here and done three in a row, all with unique cover letters, and my head is spinning a bit.  I might go into town tomorrow with my laptop, and work on apps from a cafe for a while.  It will get me out of the house, at least! 

Thanks for the advice about the driving situation.  I'm not sure about getting insured for that car... it's in my mother-in-law's name, and she is... difficult to deal with, to say the very least.  We are VERY lucky she lets my husband drive it.  Anyway, I'm mostly going for jobs that don't say they require a licence, for now. 

I appreciate your thoughtful response.  I guess I'll go a bit easier on myself.  :)
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Re: The Dreaded Job-Hunt
« Reply #24 on: February 18, 2019, 11:41:48 PM »


Luckily I had just been taken back as a permanent member of staff at Boots, so at least I had a job... so I worked in retail at just above minimum wage until I finally managed to secure my current job (which took 2 years from first interview for it to finally starting the job!).


2 years! Wow.  You're not the only person to mention Boots, so I'm definitely going to look into it. 

Also, I'm pretty sure you're one of the people who was so helpful when I was applying for my visa, so THANK YOU so much!
Will sell soul for Duke's Mayonnaise.


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Re: The Dreaded Job-Hunt
« Reply #25 on: February 18, 2019, 11:44:33 PM »
I started in the photo department at Boots and now I'm being trained as a pharmacy dispenser. It was fairly easy to move over, they actually approached me about taking the new position. I didn't even consider working in the pharmacy as I wasn't keen on doing it when I was in management at Walgreens.

But here in the UK,  I don't have to worry about being shot by a drug seeking patient.  We don't tolerate any kind of abuse from patients in our store.

I also interviewed internally for an optical consultant trainee job but they pulled it from being a full time contract to a part time contract so it wasn't the right position for me.

A couple of the optical consultants left and now work a cushy Mon-Fri job at the hospital. And several of our former dispensers work in the hospital pharmacy or private pharmacies.

And the pay isn't horrible but it isn't the greatest either but it's a starting point that will train you for a new career for free.

Sent from my SM-G950F using Tapatalk



I LOVE that they don't take crap from crazy customers here!  At all my retail jobs in the US, management would throw you under the bus to kiss the customer's ass, no matter how out of line or straight-up crazy abusive they were. 

I've never really considered a career in a pharmacy work, but I'm definitely looking into it now.  Thank you so much for the advice!
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Re: The Dreaded Job-Hunt
« Reply #26 on: February 19, 2019, 09:29:02 PM »
I LOVE that they don't take crap from crazy customers here!  At all my retail jobs in the US, management would throw you under the bus to kiss the customer's ass, no matter how out of line or straight-up crazy abusive they were. 

I've never really considered a career in a pharmacy work, but I'm definitely looking into it now.  Thank you so much for the advice!
It is a demanding but highly rewarding job. I've helped so many patients by being able to give advice. (You can't give medical advice in a US pharmacy as a dispenser) But in the UK, the NHS uses community pharmacy to ease the burden on GP's and in many cases, the pharmacy is a patients first point of contact. And before we refer to the pharmacist, we get to advise first.

My day has been made many times by talking to people about their piles, UTI's and skin conditions.

Starting next week,  I start shifts in the Care Home dispensing room, which is where my manager wants me to end up. And with that training, I will have even more future career options.

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Re: The Dreaded Job-Hunt
« Reply #27 on: February 20, 2019, 10:16:44 PM »

My day has been made many times by talking to people about their piles, UTI's and skin conditions.

Starting next week,  I start shifts in the Care Home dispensing room, which is where my manager wants me to end up. And with that training, I will have even more future career options.

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Oh, plenty of people were happy to tell me ALL about their personal health issues at my previous jobs... as I was scanning their groceries, lol.  God forbid I do some stocking in the Wal-Mart pharmacy area... you may as well be a doctor, as far as they can tell!

Congrats on the new job!  Best of luck going forward. 
Will sell soul for Duke's Mayonnaise.


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Re: The Dreaded Job-Hunt
« Reply #28 on: February 20, 2019, 10:34:01 PM »
Oh, plenty of people were happy to tell me ALL about their personal health issues at my previous jobs... as I was scanning their groceries, lol.  God forbid I do some stocking in the Wal-Mart pharmacy area... you may as well be a doctor, as far as they can tell!

Congrats on the new job!  Best of luck going forward.
I've been called "doctor lady" at Boots. I'm quick to correct them and what I really want to say is, "I was just a photo tech last month and you want me to diagnose your medical problems?"

But Boots does have a good training program and the support and guidance you are given is great.

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Re: The Dreaded Job-Hunt
« Reply #29 on: February 22, 2019, 10:48:41 PM »
It’s so hard to land that first UK job! I thought that it would be easy since I did have some experience working here in 2002/2003 when I was here on something called a BUNAC visa for 6 months. It did not make a bit of difference as it was so long ago, nor did the fact that while studying for my BA in Psychology (oh my goodness I feel you with this one) I actually spent 2 semesters here at a UK university. Just keep plugging away, get yourself a few driving lessons to help with roundabouts and confidence, and go easy on yourself. I started volunteering, and then got my first crappy job. Now, I have a job I love and feel like a have a career (and I kinda sorta use that degree). Good luck!


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