Working to showcase skills: Janice’s story

With a background in customer service and administration, Janice, aged 62 from the North East, was looking for a new role but needed support to develop strong applications that showcased her relevant skills and experience. She joined the Making A Difference programme and was introduced to Lydia, an Employment Coach.

In their initial sessions, Lydia and Janice began by looking at Janice’s current CV and tailoring it towards the types of roles she was looking for, focusing on skills, knowledge and experience directly relevant to the administration sector. When reviewing Janice’s CV they made sure the key skills and experience she had were included and things that weren’t relevant were reduced or left out.

Lydia was also able to support Janice in writing strong cover letters and personal statements. As Janice hadn’t written a cover letter or personal statement for those type of jobs before, the support and step by step guidance Lydia was able to provide was really valuable. Lydia also supported Janice to complete an in-depth job search for relevant roles in her local area. Between their sessions, when Lydia saw a vacancy listing which would be suitable for Janice, she sent her the details for Janice to review and start applications.

One of the barriers Janice had when applying for work was that most of the application forms came in the format of a Word document which was difficult to access on her mobile phone. To combat this barrier, Janice and Lydia completed these applications together over the phone and after the call Lydia would finish typing up the document and then would email it to Janice.

Janice was offered several interviews following the applications she had worked on so Lydia was then able to tailor their sessions together to work on interview techniques. Janice described these sessions as extremely helpful as they made her think about different skills and experience that she could use in her answers.

Janice has recently been successful in gaining employment in her desired field. She is incredibly grateful for the service that she has received.

Janice said of her time with Making a Difference:

“Talking to Lydia is like talking to my daughter, so friendly, helpful and supportive with everything I’ve been through. She is so patient and kind and I would urge anyone thinking about support to get it from Making a Difference. Without the ongoing support that I received I would not have a job today. Lydia was available to support me even when we didn’t have an appointment arranged – I knew I could contact her for support at any time.”


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