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Steps to Start Working in the UK
Guide on How to Write a CV and Cover Letter &
Best Ways to Find Good Jobs in this Country
Once we are already established in a place and we have a mobile phone number (very important to put in the CV), now we are ready to do everything else we need to be able to work in the UK. We have divided this section in a few steps that you should follow before starting to look for any jobs. Also we have to prepare a guide on how to write a CV and Cover letter, and different ways to find good jobs in the UK.
STEP 1: GET THE NATIONAL INSURANCE NUMBER (NIN)
In the UK, like any other countries, employees need to get this set of numbers to work legally in the country. It tells the employers and the government of who you are as a tax-payer or tax-contributor.
With this number, you’re registered with the UK Government (HMRC – Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs). And you’re obligated to pay the necessary taxes when you start to work in any employment in the UK. This process can take up to a month from start to the point of receiving your National Insurance Number (NIN)!. So, it is very important to be aware that you won’t be able to start working immediately upon arriving in the UK. Thus your first month paycheck could be delayed until you’re legal for employment.
First: Call to the NIN Center
You have to call to the National Insurance Number (NIN) application-center to ask for an appointment. The number is 0800 141 2075 (Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm) for calls from within the UK. Please note that you must be physically in the UK to ask for an appointment.
These are some information you want to have in-hand ready to provide to the operator:
Your Full Name
Full Residential Address in the UK (Where you’re living now)
Your Phone Number
Country of Origin
When/How did you arrive in the UK?
Have you applied for a NIN before?
The operator would then let you choose which Job Center you prefer to visit for an interview (if any) closest to your current location. Its good to do your research (before calling the NIN number) on which Job Center is the easiest to reach by public transportation for you to attend your interview. The time and date would also be set on the phone by the operator. So be prepared to answer whether its a suitable time and day.
Second: Wait for the NIN Letter
Job Center is going to send you a letter stating details of the appointment (interview). You’ll have to bring this letter on the appointment day.
Prepare all the necessary documents ahead of the appointment day, avoid doing anything last-minute.
You’ll need to bring a few documents to the interview. That includes your National Identification Card, Passport, proof of your current residential address and birth certificates (if possible). Its better to have more documents to show rather than having to go back on another appointment to submit to the officers.
As for proof of address, if you’re living in a rented house, a hostel or a rented room, all you need is a simple drafted letter from the owner or registered tenant of the premise.
The letter should mention: your full name, your passport, National ID number, full address of the premise, date when you start living in the premise, the tenants full name, signature and contact numbers just in case the officer would want to verify the details.
Otherwise, just bring your council tax bill, landline phone bill or gas/electric/water bill bearing your full name and address.
Third: The Appointment
On the appointment day, make sure you’ve checked the best way to go to the Job Center. And most importantly don’t forget your documents!. I personally like to save the Job Center location on my GPS app, so that it can guide me there on walking-mode.
Be at the door of the Job Center at least 30-45 mins before the stated time. One of the officers at the center would be asking you questions such as :
What is the town you were born in?
What are your parent’s name?
What’s your national insurance number back in your country?
And some other random personal details.
When you’ve completed the interview, you’ll have to sign-off some documents and the department would send you another letter via post with your new set of UK National Insurance Number in about 2-3 weeks from that day. With this letter, you are now considered legal to work in the UK.
STEP 2: YOUR CV (RESUME)
How to write a CV in UK format?
Your CV should be divided in a few sections:
Personal Details :
This part is the header of the CV. We have to include: your full name, full address, phone number and email. You won’t need to include your photo as there are policies against discrimination by the UK government.
Personal Profile :
In this section, write a little about yourself. What are your strengths and why are you interested in this kind particular job.
Personal Skills :
Write about your skills that are relevant to this particular job. The more skills, the better but must be within your personal capabilities and should be logical.
Work History :
Divide this section when writing your job experience. Starting with the most recent and then mention a few of the older ones. Only include the relevant work experiences to the job you’re apply for accurate to the Month and Year. Mention the name of the company, the city, the country and the duration when you were employed there. Also write about your responsibilities in those jobs. Companies in the UK are interested with your work experiences and what you can bring to the table.
You may write about your previous education history. But only write the type of education that is relevant to the particular job you’re applying for. For example, if you are looking for a job in a restaurant, you shouldn’t mention that you have a construction worker certification because its not related to the particular industry. You may write your put in the dates of when you receive your education just accurate to the Month and Year.
Languages and/or Hobbies:
You can include this section but it is optional. If you speak different languages, this can be a good point. Same goes with hobbies, if you have any hobbies related to the job you’re applying for, you may add another section about this.
» OUR SERVICE : If you have problems to write or translate your CV, we offer a CV Service to assist you with everything you need, click HERE to get started!
The European CV format:
To work in the UK, you may also use the European CV Format. As well known like Europass CV.
We have never used this CV format but some applicants used it before and it was acceptable.
Click HERE to use some free templates and all the information you’ll need to know to get a European CV.
STEP 3: THE COVER LETTER
How to compose a Cover Letter?
A Cover Letter is essential in applying for a job in the UK. For every job that you’re submitting a CV, you’ll have to include a Cover Letter.
You could leave the recipient column as blank, make photocopies and write it by hand for every potential employer. But the employer would possibly have an impression that you’re not choosing them exclusively, and probably have more copies of your CV sent all around town to other companies as well. Here are some pointers on how the format should be :
Start the letter with your personal details on the left side. Include your full name, address, mobile phone and email.
Then, draw a line across to divide the section. Write the employer’s details on the next line. Write the company name, address and attention to the person in charge. Otherwise, attention to the Human Resources Manager.
Write the current date of the letter on the right side of the letter in the same line of the employer’s address.
The opening paragraph should be short and straight to the point.
Explain what job you’re interested in applying for and where you found the vacancy.
If you find a job on Internet you can mention the website where you found it, or if someone referred you to the vacancy, mention their name in this section.
I would like to apply for the role of factory operative, currently being advertised on indeed.com Please find enclosed my CV for your kind consideration.
Second Paragraph : Why are you applying for this job?
Describe your professional and academic qualifications that are relevant to the role and ensure you refer to some of the skills listed in the job description.
If you have no specific academic or vocational qualifications to mention, use your relevant experience to win merit.
As you can see from my attached CV, I have over two years’ experience in the Production Industry. I believe that the knowledge and skills gained during the employment makes me a great candidate for the role.
Third Paragraph: What can you contribute to the company?
Use some examples to emphasis what you can do for the company. You could include examples from previous positions, your current job or even from your academic career.
In my current role as Line Operator at Farms Company Ltd, I have been responsible for … thus I could be improving the efficiency in your … department.
Fourth Paragraph: Re-affirmation
Here’s where you re-affirm your interest in the role and why you would be the right candidate for the company.
I am confident that I can be a great worker for your company. With my previous experience and expertise, I believe I can hit the ground running and start actively contributing to the business as soon as possible.
Thank you for your time and consideration. I look forward to meeting with you to discuss my application further.
Thank the employer for their time. It is also a good opportunity to say that you’d like to meet with the employer for an interview.
Sign off your cover letter with sentences like ‘Yours sincerely’ (if you know the name of the hiring manager), ’Yours faithfully’ (if you do not), and then your name.
Thank you for your time and consideration. I look forward to meeting with you to discuss my application further.
» OUR SERVICE: If you have problems to compose or translate your Cover Letter, we offer a service to help you with everything that you need, click HERE to get started!
STEP 4: BEST WAYS TO FIND GOOD JOBS IN THE UK
Nowadays the most of the people use internet to find good job offers.
On the internet, there are a lot of different job listing websites where we can find employment opportunities.
In the UK, there are many recruitment agencies which can get you immediate employment or placements.
The only problem is, the agencies normally offer temporary or part-time jobs. Which can be a problem if you need a full-time job to cover your monthly expenses.
But they are always a good option if you need a quick-start. Usually they can get you to start working in a few days from the day you visit them and you don’t have to wait for the long recruitment processes that companies have.
Another good way to get a quick job in the UK is to do a walk-in or canvas the area you’re interested to work in. Bring a dozen CV’s and your cover letter to drop it off at the company or business itself.
Here in the UK, there are lots of shops or restaurants that advertise vacancies in the shop’s windows. You can often see this you walk around a commercial area or high-street. You could just walk in and leave your CV.
The best thing about doing a walk-in, you could scout around if you like the work-place before you apply for a job there.
But in this case, my best tip is that you must try your best to speak directly with the manager and to submit your CV to him personally. So, always ask the staff that you’d like to talk to the manager, first (if possible). That way you know you’re actually meeting the employer, and your CV not being thrown out.
⇒ If you are moving to the UK, you may also be interested in our articles about “UK Transportation: best ways to get around this country” and “Open a UK Bank Account” .