Volunteering is great for your community, but it’s also a great way to land a job. Why does volunteering help you find work faster?
- Volunteering helps you sharpen current skills or learn new ones
- It can be used as experience on your resume or job applications
- It expands your network and increases the number of people who can help you find a job
There’s almost no instance where volunteering can’t help you get hired in some way, but here are some specific circumstances where it can help:
Employment Gaps: Whether due to long-term unemployment, family responsibilities or returning to work after a criminal charge, volunteering fills up that blank resume page and shows you’re committed to the community. It can also earn you references, which are key to getting back to work after an absence.
First Job: The big hurdle with first-time job hunts is that often you have no marketable skills, experience or references. Volunteering doesn’t just look good on job applications, either. If you’re a student thinking about applying to college, you can list your volunteer experience on many college applications, which is looked upon favorably.
Changing Fields: If you’re trying to change careers and having a hard time, see if you can volunteer for a position related to the one you want. Not only will you get valuable experience, you will find out in advance if the grass is really greener in the new field you’re dreaming about, or whether you’d rather consider different options.
Joyce asked on Snagajob’s Facebook: “That’s a nice idea, but where do you find the gas money to volunteer on a minus-zero budget?”
Hi Joyce! That’s a good question, and if you’re not able to access a place to volunteer close by, there are some great online resources to find volunteer jobs you can do from home.