Part Time Jobs – The Low Down from Naomi

Part time jobs have always existed but in reality, they are usually few and far between. Whilst there has been a steady increase of candidates calling in over the past few years requesting part-time hours, I’ve certainly noticed a marked increase over the past 12 months. For any part-time advertisement that we place we are well and truly inundated with candidates and plenty being really top quality candidates.

Who is in the market for part time jobs?

There is a very high volume of Mums (and Dads!) keen to stay in the workforce, who are seeking flexibility with their working hours. Childcare costs are escalating and there is a fine line between what they can earn in a day versus putting the child in childcare. Working part-time often helps with this balance and means they keep one foot in the workforce (e.g. helps keep their skills up and in addition it can better their chances of being considered for full time roles down the track).

Additionally, there are a vast number of people studying and they too are requesting work around their study hours.

Let’s be blunt – Sydney is a rat race and it can be exhausting! I’ve had lots of people who have spent the majority of their working life in full time work (sometimes up to 50-60 hours a week). They’re still ready to give a lot to a business, but they are looking for a work life balance. Working either a 4 day week or even a 9 day fortnight will help with their well being goals.

People can be dealing with all sorts of personal matters – e.g. caring for elderly parents, which can affect their ability to commit to full time work.

So, what are the benefits to the employer?

One of the main aspects to consider is the financial side of things, as this can be dramatic, particularly for smaller businesses. When you take into account that for every day the person is not working the business saves 20% on the salary, it can be an attractive option. The wage bill for many companies can be one of their highest costs. Without a doubt, there are many roles that must be performed on a full-time basis. However, support roles are key ones that can, at times, be under taken part-time – often with virtually the same output as a full time employee.

Quality part-time work is hard to fine, so when I place a candidate in a part-time role, I find that they are generally extremely appreciative and therefore loyal to that employer for the opportunity; for that reason, the candidate often stays for the longer term. As all business owners know, longevity of a team pays off in many ways.

When a part-timer can be flexible with the days they work, it can be very beneficial for a company to have adaptive support for the business in line with the peaks and troughs.

Job share arrangements (e.g. sharing a week of work between 2 people) can be a fantastic solution for clients looking to bring two different skill sets into the business. E.g. 2 x Office Managers, one might be better with staff management, the other with business finances – between the two people they handle the main administration workload and also add value by bringing in additional skills (that are not required all day, every day).

Reception roles are perfect for a job share arrangement – particularly if there has been high turnover in the role. Truth be told, whilst reception roles are critical to a business, many are simply not that exciting, nor do they offer any career progression. So finding a candidate willing to stick it out for the long haul can be a challenge. Two great part-timers e.g. 2.5 days each or 2/3 days can be an excellent solution. A part-timer will often be happier to take on these types of duties, for a longer period of time and as mentioned earlier, will often be loyal and appreciative of the opportunity.

Ultimately what we find is that a candidate is willing to be more flexible on the actual role e.g. take on something that doesn’t challenge them as much as they may like because the option of part-time outweighs other aspects. For an employer, that may mean they are getting and paying for someone who has a lot more experience and skills that the job requires (on tap when, and if needed) for less money.

So as you can see there are NUMEROUS benefits for all parties involved when it comes to part-time employment. I can appreciate that it may not work for every role or every company; however, next time you are looking to hire a new support staff member maybe stop to consider all options.

Feel free to call Naomi Marshall directly on 9271 0011 should you have any questions – always there to help.

Naomi Marshall – Director
P: (02) 9271 0011
M: 0422 139 910

The Must Have Interview Preparation Checklist

Do you have an interview checklist? You can only be so prepared for an interview, especially when you are still working in your current job and you are interviewing for multiple roles. However, every candidate needs to do a little bit of preparation before every interview. It’s not only common sense, it will end up being what sets you apart from the competition!!

So with that in mind, and to keep it simple and easy, I wanted to share with you my Interview Preparation Checklist. These are the absolute MUST DO’s before you go into each and every interview (yes…even with us recruiters)!! You can of course do more than this but these are the basic ones that too often, I see candidates skipping some or all of and then losing out on a great opportunity.

Bookmark this page and come back to it before you go to your next interview!

Interview Preparation Checklist:

  1. Research the company
    Hello Google!! But also, ask around, get some insight from any contacts or friends who work there or have worked there. Ask your recruiter for their insight!
    HINT – Did you know that if you type in the name of a company and then under the Google search bar, click on “news”, the results will bring up all the latest news articles about said company. This is a great way to know what is currently going on in this organisation!
  1. Research your Interviewer
    LinkedIn makes this easy – but also take the same approach as above. Ask around, do some Googling. Know whom you are meeting with and what their background is. (It is even better if you can find some common ground or people you both know).
  1. Review your resume!
    I know, this sounds simple but look it over and make sure you know what you have included and left out!! The better you know your resume, the more confident you will be when talking about your experience and your career to date.
  1. Plan your Answers
    Crazy right, how can you predict what you will be asked? Most interviews include some behavioural based questions (click here to find out more). It is really important you have a list of examples you can give to these questions and don’t try to think them up on the spot.
    Have a handful of really good examples you can call on. Usually one example would suit a variety of questions, you just need to be prepared!
  1. Rehearse your examples out loud!
    Don;t worry about sounding silly! You need to practice articulating your answers and examples of your experience out loud. You don’t want to stumble on your responses (and it is an easy thing to do during an interview). Check out what Nyome had to say about this recently here.
  1. Plan YOUR questions.
    Make sure you are prepared to ask the interviewer questions (more often than not, candidates forget this step). Asking questions is so important in an interview and it is an opportunity to demonstrate your enthusiasm for the role as well as the fact that you have researched the company.
  1. Have your outfit planned
    Make sure your shirts are ironed and clean. Suit up and dress to impress. It is always better to be overdressed for an interview than underdressed.
  1. Triple check the interview details
    You are human, mistakes can happen – trust me I’ve made many. Triple check you know what time your interview is, where you are going and how you are going to get there (on time)! Nothing worse than rocking up to your interview flustered because you got the time wrong or couldn’t find the address, etc.
  1. Tell yourself You ROCK!
    Be confident and believe in yourself. As recruiters, we believe in you, that is why we’ve sent you to our client or called you in to meet with us. Remind yourself of your skills and that you are a valuable team member.

Of course, there are other things you can do for an interview and there are sometimes homework “tasks” you are asked to do before specific interviews. But as a rule of thumb, the above checklist works! Being prepared and demonstrating this during your interview (and believe me, clients and recruiters know if you have prepared) really sets you a part from what most of your competition is doing. So take a little time, the day or night before an interview and go over this checklist.

If you are still not feeling confident or have other questions you want clarity around, contact us at Sprint. We are here to help and will always go over any interview preparation you think you may need.

Should I Consider a Temp Role?

I am currently unemployed… should I consider a temp role while looking for my next permanent role?

The Sprint People answer is…. YES!

There are many great benefits to temp work! Some candidates come to Sprint saying that they will only consider permanent options because temporary work is unstable, and looks inconsistent on a resume. For the large part of that statement, we disagree! Ever heard of the theory that activity stems from activity? Get busy if you want to be busy!

Here are some other great reasons why you should consider temporary work:

If you’re in the market for a permanent role, it always looks better on your CV if you have kept yourself busy in a temp assignment, rather than spending weeks or months unemployed.

Even if it’s just a one-day assignment you have the opportunity to network and build new connections! Remember, you never know where that next permanent role may come from. If you spend a day on reception, on the lowest hourly rate on earth, but you do a fantastic job… That employer may consider you for future roles throughout the business should they become available.

Temp roles frequently evolve into permanent opportunities. At Sprint, we find a high percentage of the temps we place are offered permanent roles within our clients businesses. Keep in mind it is often NOT in the role they were filling in temporarily, but another opportunity that is suited to their experience. We find our clients are confident speaking to the person who is temping with them about the role first as they already know them and have had first hand experience dealing with them in the workplace (better than an interview for many clients!)

Temping gives you the opportunity to demonstrate to your recruiter how great you are! When I place a temp and my client raves about their great performance, positive attitude etc., I feel confident going of my way to call all my clients and tell them what a great asset that candidate will be to their business. Our clients LOVE it when we refer a candidate that is already tried and tested.

You have the opportunity to gain insight into industries that you may not know much about (or in some instances that you’ve never heard of). Which may open your mind to new possibilities! You can gain exposure to different systems, processes and ideas that may assist you in your next role.

Lastly, it keeps some money coming in so that you’re not forced to accept the first permanent role that is offered to you. You spend so much time at work that it is worth waiting to secure a GREAT job, rather than settling for just any job.

Having said all this above, if you’re worried that temping is making your resume look a little unstable, then summarise your temp assignments into one heading e.g. “Temping through Sprint People in various admin/ reception roles”. There is no need to list every single one day assignment, but it is important to make special mention of any assignment that is extended for more than a couple of months, or where you gained a skill that may be required in a role you’re applying for.

It’s natural to freak out when you find yourself unemployed, but if you consider temping while you’re looking for that dream role then you can keep some $$$ coming in the door, while meeting new people, trying different environments, and gaining new skills – win, win, win, win!

For more information on temping and pay rates follow this blog to ensure you don’t miss next blog post “Why Doesn’t My Temp Rate Reflect My Permanent Salary Expectations?”. I have also written a blog series on how to be a good temp – you can read that here. Or, if you can’t wait that long, get in touch via or 92710022.


Before you Can Sprint…..You Need to Intern!

It is common knowledge that all jobs require a certain level of experience. Even graduate jobs. Having a degree is simply not enough in the increasingly competitive job market.

As a soon to be graduate, I found myself in a catch 22, knowing that I needed experience to get a job, but not being able to get experience/a job because I didn’t have prior industry experience!! Very frustrating.

Recognising this problem, I sought experience in anyway possible! I spent a weeks salary (from my part-time job at the local pharmacy) on a new suit and a great pair of pumps to showcase my positive, ambitious, and professional attitude. I then set my sights on getting those pumps into the door of a great company. I was happy to sacrifice salary for experience through an internship, knowing that in the long run it would pay dividends!

I have gained so much from being an intern, I have now done this twice.

My first internship was for a psychology organisation…in New York!!! Having dreams of living and working in the city that never sleeps, I Googled. I spent hours wading through company websites searching for internship opportunities. I finally found a company that inspired me, one I thought would be a perfect match. Despite not stating that they offered internships, I emailed them, explained I was a bright-eyed girl from Sydney, Australia looking for the opportunity of an internship. After a Skype interview at midnight to sell my case I was booking tickets for a 3 month adventure, ticking items off my bucket list as I went.

My second internship is here with Sprint People. I responded to an ad on Seek, called to follow up my application and made sure I put my best high-heeled foot forward when I came in to meet with Naomi and the team.

And I can honestly say, that as good as the Big Apple experience was, nothing beats local experience and networking. THANK YOU SPRINT PEOPLE!!!!

Internships not only give you the opportunity to gain experience, but they prove to any potential employer that you are hard working and dedicated. It shows that you have “go getter” attitude and it looks fabulous on your CV!

Here are my top 7 Tips for anyone looking to Intern:

1. Keep a positive attitude and wear a smile
2. Be prepared to start at the bottom (filing, shredding, cups of tea etc)
3. Show initiative – rock up early to get some work done, stay late, offer to do anything and everything!
4. Network while you are there! This is a biggie. You never know where these networks can lead you
5. Learn about your industry – read industry reports and articles and ask questions
6. Find a mentor and value them
7. Enjoy the journey and make it worthwhile.

If you would like to know more about how to take the next step in your career – be it your first step in the working world, a side step or a giant leap forwards – check out Sprint Coach for some tips.


To call or not to call – “I am perfect for the advertised job – what do I do now?”

Some of you may read this and think that the answer is quite simple… but there are a few key points to consider before you pick up the phone.

When a recruiter or hiring manager advertises a role they can sometimes be absolutely inundated with calls and a large majority of those calls can be from people that are calling about…. (wait for it)….. absolutely nothing!!!  We know that you must be calling for a reason, however unless you state your question, unfortunately we cannot read your mind (though we often wish we could) to guess what piece of information it is that you might be looking for.

Moral to this story – call with a purpose! Identify what you want to achieve from your call before you pick up the phone (e.g. Is it close to public transport? Is my experience suitable? etc.) Simply stating that you are calling in regards to “job xyz” is not giving the recruiter the piece of information they need to help you.

The second most important thing to consider about that call, is making sure that the questions you have aren’t already addressed in the advert. E.g. If the advert states that “the role is part-time and  located in North Sydney”, don’t call and ask “is the role full-time?” or “where is the role located?”. Ultimately this is telling the recruiter that you have poor attention to detail.

Again, some might think that what I am explaining is quite straight forward, however just this morning I advertised a temporary assignment and was inundated with no less than 20 calls in the first hour from people that had absolutely no reason behind their call except to say that they have seen my advert.

Lastly, when you do call, try to sound enthusiastic and let the recruiter know your name before you start shooting questions at them!!! When a candidate calls and they sound like they have just woken up and they can barely string a sentence together – they are doing themselves more harm than good!

When I do get a phone call from somebody that speaks clearly, calls with a purpose, sounds friendly and engaging and can clearly tell me why they think they are right for the job advertised – I will often book them in for an interview without even waiting for their resume to come through!