There are no formal degree requirements for those wishing to enter advice work, although many people do possess degrees and postgraduate or professional qualifications.
The following subjects may be helpful:
The usefulness of each degree will depend on the nature of the advice provided. For example, a degree in finance will be beneficial for those offering advice about debt or finance, and a degree in social work will be useful for those offering advice to single parent families.
There are some degrees that will be useful for any type of advice work though. For example, most advice work will touch on legal issues and so a degree in law will be beneficial. Some universities have also now started to offer degrees in advice studies, while others allow students to study advice work as part of a degree in law.
Those with an HND can also enter the career of an advice worker. Any subject that gives knowledge of or demonstrates an interest in law, finance, communication or social work is useful. In particular, the following HND subjects will be useful:
It is possible to get into advice work without a degree, as many employers look for candidates who have relevant experience and the necessary skills instead.
No specific postgraduate qualification is required either, but many applicants may have followed postgraduate courses in law, psychology, social work or social science. Other qualifications or completed courses in areas such as counselling or guidance will also be valued by employers.
Experience in dealing with people and running administrative systems is very important. In addition, candidates need to show evidence of the following:
Knowledge of an ethnic minority language may be useful for some posts.
Volunteer experience is an important, and sometimes essential, factor in obtaining paid employment. There can be a high level of competition for paid positions, as it is common for advice work to be done by volunteers.
Often, there are large numbers of people with experience and relatively few paid positions available. Developing contacts through voluntary work is a useful way of gaining employment. It will show your commitment and enthusiasm to the role as well. Other relevant work experience will also be valuable. This could include work that involves customer service or working in your community.
Sending speculative letters to organisations may also be worthwhile in finding employment.
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