It’s extremely common for people who get their GCSEs to want to start work immediately. Many are left asking “How do I get my first job?” With such a competitive market, it can be difficult for even postgrads to secure a role. So what are the options if you’ve only got GCSEs under your belt?
The options available
Deciding what path to take for your first job can be difficult. You might feel pressured to find your career then and there, and jump straight in. Take your time, explore your options, and recognise that your first job is an opportunity to grow.
Apprenticeships are an excellent choice for those looking to take on their first jobs. They offer on-the-job experience and notable qualifications, most even offering payment while you learn.
Most digital or office apprenticeships take a year or two to complete. These can include qualifications in:
- Digital media marketing
- General business admin
- Touch typing
- Data analysis
- General IT user skills
- Software development
- Cyber security
This list isn’t all-inclusive, either. There is an apprenticeship for everybody out there, with companies often offering permanent positions once the apprenticeship has finished. For more information, you can look up one of the many apprenticeship providers, or go to the gov.uk website.
Become a sole trader
All school leavers have the opportunity to become a sole-trader. If you’re keen on a trade and have experience, why not at least try freelancing. This way, you can ensure that you will most likely always have work, whilst simultaneously being your own boss.
You don’t need to sign up for self-employment until you earn £1000 in a tax year. This tax will be paid digitally soon, to find out how that might affect you, read here.
Note that even if you have a normal job, unless the contract says so, you don’t need to stop working your freelance job.
When working as a freelancer, it can be difficult to learn how to invoice your customers. Using the Invoice24 app makes this process far easier for both you and the clients.
When looking to start work, qualifications might feel like a limitation. You want to gather notable experience and earn money to sustain yourself. The easy solution is to earn them while you work. You can do this both as part of a job and through extra resources.
While on the job, you can chase extra qualifications that fit your role. An example would be taking on a business admin qualification whilst working in a minor management role. This, or similar examples, would not only enhance your portfolio, but also make moving up in your current role much more possible if that’s your aim.