No matter what industry you plan to go into after your studies, you will always get asked the question ‘what experience have you had?’ Whilst at university it can be hard to manage your time and feel like you have enough of it to fit in work experience around your studies. However, it is definitely worth considering.

Work experience is something that people always talk about a lot, but it’s not always made clear on how we go about doing this. Sometimes, the person who tells you about it will offer contacts through themselves, but you don’t always want to go for the easy option and use an already existing contact.

So, if you want to get yourself some work experience of make your own contacts, here are some pointers  for you that I feel will help…

1. Use the internet

This may sound simple but it is a vital thing to use. By searching online you will be able to find companies that you may already know, but also may find companies that you didn’t even know existed. By using the internet you may also find important contact details, or dedicated sections of a businesses website specifically for students and young people who are interested in their company. After finding a few places that seem interesting to you, simply send them a message and let them know who you are, why you’re contacting them and that you will be grateful for any opportunity they can offer you. Companies always like people who are willing to put themselves out there.

2. Look for dedicated websites that offer work experience

Depending on the industry you’re looking at, there may be dedicated websites full of opportunities for you to apply for. One example of this is ‘Go Think Big’ provided by O2, who partnered with Bauer Media. This website aims to help people who are interested in media work experience, with companies such as the BBC, Sky, Sony music and many more.

3. Use Social Media

Social media is a key thing to use when you are trying to make contacts, especially Twitter. To start off, simply follow people who may be known in the industry you’re interested in, or people who work for local companies that you wouldn’t mind doing some work experience for. Once you’ve done that, don’t be afraid to contact them. Like I said before, people will like that you’re taking it upon yourself to contact them, as it shows you’re interested and passionate about what you want to do. It can be hard contacting someone you’ve not spoken to before – especially someone who is looked at as a professional, but as long as what you’re saying in the message is formal and doesn’t use colloquial language then they’ll respect you.

They are just a few tips on how to get yourself started when looking for work experience, however be careful not to get too caught up in looking for it if you’ve been given a great opportunity from your university, or a contact through someone else. It’s all about getting as much experience as you possibly can – whether you’ve got the opportunity yourself or not.

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