Volunteering in your CV can earn you extra points with an employer

Ability to communicate or professional practice. Those are common requirements of employers while recruiting new employees. If you acquired them via volunteering state it in your CV. You can also get a certificate to prove it.

In Slovakia, especially employees in big multinational companies have positive attitude towards volunteering. These companies even offer to their employees the opportunity to volunteer either by means of company´s volunteering days or they motivate them to volunteer in their free time. All in all, there are however only few companies in Slovakia which take into consideration whether the applicant did volunteer or is actively volunteering. The reality is (and it is also confirmed by the multinational companies) that volunteering supports employability and competitiveness on the labour market. Maybe it would be sufficient to properly mention the volunteering experience in the CV.

Volunteering often constitutes a good practice for future employment

Survey among employers which was conducted by the Platform of Volunteer Centres and Organisations in the cooperation with Matej Bel University in Banská Bystrica showed that for the majority of employers who participated in the survey are those skills and knowledge in the applicants for employment important which could have been acquired via volunteering.

Importance of indicators in the selection process of future employees from the employers’ point of view:

  • Social and communication competences 86,6%
  • Knowledge and skills demonstrated during the interview 84,2%
  • Computer literacy 76,2%
  • Education, qualification 66,5%
  • Practice in the field 52,8%
  • Knowledge of foreign languages 47,3%
  • Activities in NGOs 6,2%

Report from the survey among employers within the Volunteering – path to employment project (BROZMANOVÁ GREGOROVÁ, A. – VLAŠIČOVÁ, J. 2014.) 

How to present volunteering experiences in the job searching process

If you acquired knowledge and skills which your potential employer is looking for thanks to volunteering list them in the work experiences. And be specific. Describe what exactly you were doing and what did you learn thanks to volunteering. If you passed numerous stages of the recruitment process and you reached the level of personal interview don’t hesitate to talk about your volunteering experience. Employer who is worth to be the one for you would be for sure happy to learn about them. Exactly this information can make the difference. They can help to recently graduated applicants who did not work yet but thanks to volunteering they have experiences they dream company is looking for.

It is worth to be a volunteer

Each volunteer has the right to get a confirmation on the number of hours and duration of volunteering and on exact description of the activities from the organisation where he/she was helping. He/she can hand over this confirmation on the number of hours devoted to volunteering to the company where he/she works and instead of 2% from taxes donate 3% or use it for other different purposes. From last year on some organisations have apart the confirmation also the opportunity to register the volunteer on the D-skills for employment portal. Here the volunteer who has worked at least 40 volunteering hours lists in a form respective skills which he/she acquired via volunteering. The organisation confirms these skills and sends the form to Matej Bel University in Banská Bystrica. The form is then approved by a commission which issues a certificate to the volunteer. This can be attached to the CV.

Volunteering experiences really mean something

Who else than volunteers themselves could better prove that volunteering experiences really mean something when looking for job. This is how some of them see it: "I got my current job via volunteering." (volunteer Katarína, 28 years) "I volunteer in the area of my future profession and my current studies. It is a great tool how to gain experiences. " (volunteer Stano, 22 years) "I found a job because my boss liked my experiences in volunteering." (volunteer Beata, 30 years) "Thanks to volunteering I found two jobs at once." (volunteer Zdeno, 28 years). 

From: Brozmanová Gregorová, A. – Šavrnochová, M. – Šolcová, J. 2016. Discover yourself in volunteering

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BDC Team

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