FAQs students & graduates

1 . When should I apply for a vacancy that I see advertised?

If you find an opportunity you would like to undertake, apply for it straight away. Employers do not always stick to the closing date that they have stated. They often remove adverts early if they receive a lot of responses in just a few days so it is best to get in early.

2 . Do employers want a Ravensbourne graduate or student?

The simple answer is yes. They have contacted us because they know that our talent pool is strong and they are looking for Ravensbourne people. Get brave and apply now.

3 . Should I take part in an unpaid work trial?

Unpaid work trials are illegal in the UK. It is unlawful for an employer to ask you to take part in one as part of a recruitment process or to assess your suitability for a role. We do not knowingly advertise vacancies that ask you to undertake an unpaid work trial. Please contact us and let us know if you are asked to take part. We don't advertise any unpaid or expenses only opportunities that last longer than 4 weeks to students and none what-so-ever for graduates.

4 . What are recruitment scams?

While we screen every opportunity before advertising it , sometimes an advert that looks genuine turns out to be a scam. It is your responsibility to research companies before applying for any vacancies we advertise. If you are suspicious of any employers please contact us at ravensbourneagency@rave.ac.uk to report your concerns. Do not apply for any positions that ask you to pay an application fee and contact us if a vacancy we have advertised asks you to do so. For more information and advice about recruitment scans, visit the Safer Jobs website.

5 . How long do vacancies stay on the Ravensbourne Agency?

Vacancies only stay up online until the closing date. So make sure you print the details of any vacancies you apply for in case you get an interview and need to access the job spec.

6 . What are employers looking for?

Employers tell us that the applications they receive often include poor spelling and grammar. You must proof read your application, or ask a friend to read it before sending it.

Balance your financial needs with your academic workload.

It is recommended that full-time students work between 10 and 15 hours a week during term time to balance academic workload. International students have restrictions in the number of hours they can work. Please read the section on Working, jobs and Penions on the DirectGov website.

7 . What should I include in my personal statement on my profile?

In order to attract employers to you and your profile, you need to make sure your profile is skills based and accurately reflects what you can do, not what you want to do in industry.

Your personal profile is not the place to be humble; it is your chance to be noticed and tell the potential employer exactly who you ‘really’ are and what you can do for them. But please, do not make the mistake of going ‘over the top’ and give the impression to the prospective employer that you’re either arrogant or simply too good to be true.

An excellent personal profile must be:

  • Relevant (mention specific software skills and any industry experience you may have or any Ravensbourne projects you are working on)
  • Short and to the point.
  • Only contain positive information on your personal statement, we would suggest you keep it within the 500 character boundary.

8 . What work should I put in my portfolio on the Ravensbourne Agency?

Include work that you are proud of and that reflects the skills that you have learnt at Ravensbourne. Make sure that the work is easy to understand for the viewer and remember you can update it as many times as you like.

Some courses are not as relevant to the portfolio section on your profile. In particular the broadcast technology students and graduates. You will still need a profile in order to view work opportunities but can leave that part blank.

9 . Volunteer work – what are the benefits?

Ravensbourne Agency only advertises volunteer opportunities if they are for a registered charity and remember we also do advertise unpaid work experience that lasts up to 4 weeks for students only.

The benefits of volunteering for a charity are enormous to you and the community. The right match can help you find friends, reach out to the community, learn new skills, and even advance your career. You can build on your existing talents by seeing a project through from the beginning to the end. These might include refreshing a website, making films, a marketing campaign and a design brief. Volunteering can also help to give you a sense of purpose, develop your communication skills and make you a happier person.

10 . What if an employer contacts me about a work opportunity via the Ravensbourne Agency?

If an employer contacts you through the Ravensbourne Agency for a work opportunity that is not advertised through the Ravensbourne Agency then please advise the Careers ands Industry Liaison team. You need to ensure that the work opportunity is genuine and adheres to our Terms & Conditions. If you have any concerns at all please contact ravensbourneagency@rave.ac.uk to discuss further.

ACAS: Offer General help, advice and support for workers providing independent advice on rights for part-time workers, employment contracts and holiday pay. There Helpline is 08457 474747.

Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB): CAB advice helps people resolve issues relating to benefits, housing, legal, discrimination, employment and immigration. Some offices also provide email advice. Visit the CAB website and find your local office by searching under the 'Find your local bureau' option.

The National Association of Student Employment Services (NASES): NASES provides students with information about Employment rights and law and combining work with study.

Trade Unions: The Trade Union's main aim is to protect and advance the interests of its members in the workplace. Most trade unions are independent of any employer. Trade Unions can help you to negotiate agreements with employers on pay and conditions. They can also provide legal and financial advice and help with resolving disputes.

Direct Gov National Minimum Wage: If your employer is paying you less than Minimum Wage you should contact the Pay and Work Rights helpline on 0800 917 2368. Or visit the DirectGov website for more information about who can claim the Minimum Wage.

Own It: Own It offers free intellectual property advice for London’s creative people. This includes basic support through to online resources and surgeries with intellectual property lawyers.

Design and Artists Copyright Society (DACS): DACS is the copyright society for the visual arts. Membership of DACS will help you manage your copyright in the UK and overseas. Services include help with negotiation of fees and collecting fees on your behalf.

The Health & Safety Executive (HSE): The HSE provides information on workplace health and safety information along with expert advice and guidance.

The Suzy Lamplugh Trust: The Suzy Lamplugh Trust provides practical support and personal safety guidance to help people develop skills and strategies for staying safe in the workplace.

The Commission for Equality and Human Rights: The Commission have a statutory remit to promote and monitor human rights. They also protect, enforce and promote equality across age, disability, gender, race, religion and belief, pregnancy and maternity, marriage and civil partnership, sexual orientation and gender reassignment.

HMRC - Working in the UK: Here you will find information about what you need to do before you start work as an International. It also tells you about the documents you’ll need, how you pay tax and National Insurance and where you can get help.

HM Revenue & Customs: For information about registering as self-employed and completing your tax return.

National Association of College and University Entrepreneurs (NACUE): NACUE is a fast-paced, grassroots charity that supports and represents student-led enterprise societies and young entrepreneurs to drive the growth of entrepreneurship in Universities and Colleges across the UK.

11. How can I be sure that the work opportunity is genuine?

Student Services aim to provide students and graduates with access to appropriate work opportunities, internships and work experience. We do our best to verify the legitimacy of such provision; in particular we will not post anything that is shown to be in contravention of UK law. However we are not able to guarantee the final authenticity of individual opportunity adverts or other posted information. We would urge students and graduates to carry out their own checks. Applications to any adverts posted on this site are made at your own risk and we cannot be held responsible for any costs or damages incurred. If you have any questions or concerns about information posted on our site please contact us so we can act appropriately.

12. What do I need to know if I am working freelance?

If you are working on a freelance basis, it is your responsibility to notify HMRC and to check if you need public liability insurance cover. This article on Becoming Freelance may be useful.