I learnt how to believe in myself…

Balraj from Derby lost his job during the pandemic and began to lose direction and confidence until he met up with the Way2Work team at Derby College Group.

How did you find out about the Way2Work project?

I met the Way2Work team from DCG [Derby College Group] at the recruitment fair at Pride Park Stadium in July 2021. I recognised one of the team as they previously supported me on the MoveAhead programme and gave me the support to secure employment. I was keen to ask for support because I had support previously on the other programme and was very impressed, it made a huge difference.

How did your work coach help you on Way2Work?

I am hearing impaired and rely on hearing aids. My work coach booked me weekly face to face appointments which were essential for us to communicate effectively. Following my initial assessment and creating my action plan, I was contacted via text and email to confirm appointments etc. because phone calls would not be suitable. 

“My previous role finished during the pandemic, and I was feeling frustrated and lacking confidence when I enrolled onto the Way2Work programme.”

I was supported to ensure my cv and cover letter were showcasing my skills and various personal statements to support applications in various sectors. My work coach supported me with finding opportunities and checking the full job descriptions to ensure they were suitable for me, and checking if the role involved phone calls as this would not have been suitable. 

My work coach helped me identify all the transferable skills that would support me across a range of sectors and opportunities. I was supported to complete applications and spent sessions completing interview practice and preparation. When I was invited to interviews my work coach ensured that there would be a BSL interpreter at the interview to support my needs. They encouraged me to keep going when I felt down and assured me if I stayed focused, I would achieve my goal.

“The Way2Work team at Derby College Group have given me excellent support, they have been patient, and nothing was too much trouble. I have valued this support because you don’t get this kind of support everywhere and I am very grateful.

What skills or experience has Way2Work given you?

To recognise the transferable skills and the value of my previous experience. To look at many different jobs and study the job description. How to write personal statement. How to prepare for an interview and prepare scenarios and answers to possible questions. How to job search effectively and apply for opportunities. How to believe in myself.

What kind of jobs have you done before?

Admin for the Ministry of Justice and the courts, warehouse, and data entry.

Can you tell me about your current job?

My new job is working at the Royal Derby Hospital as a Medical Records Administrator it is full time and a permanent position.

What are your plans for the future?

I plan to engage with all the training opportunities within my new role and develop a career pathway within the NHS. I also plan to complete my Level 3 in British Sign Language and offer some of my time volunteering at the hospital to support others.

To find out more about Way2Work from Derby College Group, call Carole on 07710 365 790 or email carole.peters@derby-college.ac.uk

The Way2Work project is part of the Nottingham Jobs Service and is part-funded by the European Social Fund (ESF).