Looking the part is helpful when it comes to getting a job, but what if your circumstances prevent you from having anything suitable to wear for an interview? This happens to more people than you might imagine, and fortunately there are support services that can help. Today, we’re talking to a fantastic charity, Smart Works, about empowering women by giving them the clothes, practical skills and confidence they need to succeed.
In short, Smart Works supports their clients to secure a job. But it’s more than that. Gaining financial independence is transformative, improving individual lives, the lives of their families and communities. Jan Iceton, Chair of Smart Works Manchester, tells us more and these are just a few insights from our chat:
- When going for an interview aim to wear something that makes you feel the best version of yourself.
- Try not to wear clothes that are out of character, you should still look like you!
- Often the biggest barrier to securing employment is simply having a disadvantaged background.
- Employers could (and should?) be more open-minded when trying to fill available positions, particularly where there are shortages of workers.
- Smart Works services are available throughout the UK and via centres in Birmingham, Edinburgh, Leeds, London, Manchester, Newcastle and Reading
It seems to us that Smart Works clients get such a confidence boost that they’re almost a different person afterwards. In Jan’s words, “It’s not a hand out, it’s a hand held.” Truly inspirational stuff!
About Smart Works
Smart Works is a UK charity that uses the power of clothes and coaching to transform a woman’s confidence. Their service is carefully designed, with kindness and respect at the heart of everything they do. It is about much more than the clothes their clients are gifted: it is about what the clothes allow each woman to become. When she looks in the mirror, she begins to see hope and possibility for a better future. Over 20,000 women have been empowered through Smart Works to date. After their appointment, 95% feel more confident about succeeding in their next interview, 97% feel more confident in their new outfit and 93% are more aware of their strengths and skills. Importantly, 62% secure a job within a month.
Smart Works services are available throughout the UK and via centres in Birmingham, Edinburgh, Leeds, London, Manchester, Newcastle and Reading.