1) Fills gaps in CV/Resume
I was only out of work for 6 months, but I was consistently asked in interviews ‘what have you been doing with your time?’ Volunteering gave me a great talking point and I was able to clearly demonstrate how I used my ‘free’ time wisely and effectively.
2) Network Building
There is a lot to be said for meeting a person ‘in the right place at the right time’. Volunteering enabled me to be regularly interacting with like-minded individuals, and I would often find myself meeting people who knew someone at the company I was applying to, or meeting someone who was already working in the field I was trying to get into.
3) Opportunity for career change and exploration
If, like me, you haven’t quite yet found your ‘perfect job’ but are also aware that hopping from job to job can have a negative impact on your career, then volunteering is a great way to try out different types of job roles or industries. For me, it was a case of needing more relevant and recent experience in a specific skill, so I found a volunteering role that enabled me to learn and develop that skill.
4) Helps you to integrate with local community
Being new to Singapore, meant that employers were sometimes ‘concerned’ with my potential lack of local knowledge or lack of experience in Asia. Therefore, volunteering meant that I could help to ease these concerns by demonstrating my local knowledge, connections and experience gained through volunteering.
5) Employers value people who volunteer
Most companies have some form of core value that surrounds charities and giving back to the community. Therefore, volunteering shows that you also hold these values in high regard. Personally, Volunteering also shows that you are passionate, hard working and dedicated by nature; 3 of the key words that are often written on resumes with little proof to back it up!