Finding a job

Step 1: Finding a job

Job hunting

 You might be surprised to find that in Australia most part-time and casual jobs are not advertised. Instead employers rely on their networks to find their employees.

The best way to find work is to approach potential employers directly. Search for them in the Yellow Pages and send them your job application or knock on doors and ask whether there are jobs available.

Where to work: top 5 areas

These jobs were popular in 2011 and will give you a head-start on building your future career. Most don’t require experience, but some will require formal training before you start.

  • Higher Education – 32% of the positions in SA are part-time. See your university or college’s international office to ask whether there are any part-time jobs available. You might also think about working in the library, which takes lots of students each year to work behind the desk and repack shelves
  • Hospitality – 58% is part-time. This area is really popular with students so there is a lot of competition. You might consider applying for work at an ethnically themed restaurant as they might like to hire waiters and waitresses from the same ethnic group. Just make sure that the job helps you to improve your English skills. There are also a number of casual kitchen hand jobs that will get you into the industry.
  • Health and community services – 45% of positions are part-time. Nursing homes, hostels for the elderly and hospitals need staff 24/7 so there are lots of opportunities to work, even in hours outside of class time. It’s also a great way to improve your skills in speaking and working with others.
  • Business and financial services – 35% of positions are part-time. If you have a degree in this area or work experience overseas you can apply. One of the best places to apply for part-time work is with tax agents like H&R Block, which employs students to help small businesses complete their tax forms. You will need to complete a short course on Australian Taxation Law before you can be accepted for this job.
  • Retail – 50% of positions are part-time.  Supermarkets, food stores, the Central Market and the cheaper chain stores such as Big W, Kmart and Bunnings are constantly looking for more people to join their team. Many of these stores will give you training before you start work.

Other options to consider

  • Apprentice/Trainee: this is a great way to get paid to learn new skills or to bridge the gap between school and work. Just remember that the wage may be lower than most workers or you may not be paid at all. Before you start you will need to sign a formal training agreement that will set out your rights and responsibilities. Signing the agreement is not required for part-time and casual work.
  • Contractor/Self-employed: this is a good option for people who enjoy working for themselves and want to be paid per job rather than per hour. If you decide to become a contractor or self-employed, you must give up your rights to sick leave and holiday leave and provide for your tax and sometimes workplace safety insurance. If you are thinking of taking this option, you should first get expert legal advice.