Gain experience
Gain experience

Gaining relevant work experience is vital to support your job search – without it you’re less likely to be successful at interview.

Our aim is to support local people to gain the best advantage they can with valuable work experience and we offer short term (usually one to two weeks) unpaid placements that can help you. We may also be able to help you with job shadowing, taster days and part time placements lasting up to three months.

What will I gain from a placement?

Undertaking career tasters, work experience placements or voluntary work of any kind can help you on your career journey in lots of ways:

  • Gaining confidence in the workplace
  • Learning new skills or brushing up on existing ones
  • Meeting new people and developing your contacts
  • Improving your CV – you can use your work experience to show how you fit in a team or deliver good customer service for example
  • Gaining a reference
  • Sharing your skills

Who can apply for a placement?

Anyone. Whether you're at school, college or university, or are unemployed, we welcome work experience applications from the local community.

Where could I go in the council?

We have placements in a variety of services across the council including:

  • Nursery assistants and Childcare
  • Administration
  • Libraries
  • Museums
  • Civil engineering, Architecture and Property services
  • Democratic services, Electoral register
  • Finance
  • Human resources
  • Communications

What will be expected from me?

Whilst you’re with us on your placement you’ll be working alongside experienced staff who are carrying out their job, so you’ll be expected to make a contribution to that work. We want to make our placements as beneficial as possible for you so you’ll be working on real projects and undertaking real tasks. We will also expect you to:

  • Follow all the council rules and procedures that will be given in your induction on day one, paying particular attention to all aspects of health and safety
  • Accept responsibility for your learning and ask for help if you are unsure about anything relating to your placement or tasks you are being given
  • Follow reasonable instruction from your supervisor or buddy
  • Attend work at the agreed times for the duration of your placement
  • Above all be motivated to achieve – after all this is your opportunity to show us what you can do!

How do I apply for a placement?

We welcome applications from our local communities and are taking a consistent approach to ensure a fair and equal process is applied when considering work experience applications. To apply for a placement please click one of the links below, which will take you to our application form. The application will ask for some basic personal information so we can get in touch with you, along with preferred dates of the placement and the service area you would like to work in. The form also asks for details on why you are applying for this placement and how it will help with your job search.

Please note that due to demand we can only consider work experience requests from Southampton City residents (i.e. SO14-SO19 postcodes).

Please note if you are requesting a placement within the Children’s Service (i.e. Nursery and Sure Start experience), please apply at least six weeks before the actual date of the placement you are looking for. This is requested in order to ensure any appropriate DBS checks are undertaken to work with children before a placement is taken up.

Apply for a work experience placement (student)

Apply for a work experience placement (adult)

Where else can I find employment support in Southampton?

We offer a range of employment support programmes for all ages and all abilities, our programmes include:

  • Access Southampton, provides all you need to know about opportunities in and around the city to help support decision making while in school, college and beyond
  • Work Clubs, which are based in the local community and support people to find work. They are free to attend and provide help with CV, job search, completing application forms, interview practice and other help to find a job in a friendly community environment
  • The Employment Support Team is the council's employment support service. We offer help, advice and support to people who are disabled or disadvantaged, to find work or training
  • The Solent Jobs Programme provides the support to get the job you want. We offer this help to anyone with a health condition (e.g. anxiety, depression or a physical health problem) who has been out of work for a while