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    Are you a student over 18? Part-time teacher? Parent? Just someone that needs some extra income? Some free food and drinks perhaps? Would you like to pick your own hours? - Casual work is available to you now...

    The following is an article taken from Choices Magazine after a visit to the Mystery Shopping Club.

    "Wanted: Shopaholic nosey parker with excellent observational skills, a good ear and flexible attitude to part-time work. Anyone can apply. Work available in all areas. Must be prepared to eat free meals, enjoy shopping discounts and visit pubs - and be paid for it."

    Believe it or not, the above job advertisement is not as far fetched as it sounds. If you love shopping, you'll be pleased to hear that it's possible to shop for a living. In fact, it's a multi-million pound industry for market research companies who employ "mystery shoppers" to shop up and down the country - all in the name of customer service and research.

    There are a number of mystery shopping companies who organise whole armies of professional shoppers on behalf of retailers, pubs, restaurants, banks and other service industries. Their mission? To mingle in, look inconspicuous and file a report on anything from customer service to cleanliness in the restrooms.

    If you visit one or two pubs in a night, you'll get your food and drink paid for, travel expenses and you'll be paid anything from £6.00 to £8.00 up for each visit.

    But there is one problem with mystery shopping: truly dedicated shoppers never switch off from their work. You'll find yourself compulsively evaluating service and checking ceilings for cobwebs even when you're not on duty. It eventually becomes a part of your life.

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    IMPORTANT INFORMATION ppi Have you taken out a credit card, mortgage, secured loan, unsecured loan or hire purchase agreement in the last ten years? If you have (or have had) a mortgage, loan or credit card with providers such as Abbey, Barclaycard, MBNA, Halifax, HSBC, HBOS, Lloyds TSB, Natwest, RBS or in fact any other credit provider, you may be able to reclaim up to 15,000 if you were sold PPI insurance - in most cases even if you've lost the paperwork. Learn more about PPI Claims now!

    BECOME A MYSTERY SHOPPER Are you a student over 18? Part-time teacher? Or maybe a parent or just someone that needs some extra income? Some free food and drinks perhaps? Would you like to pick your own hours? Casual work is available now.

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    Kate
  • BCL Legal Recruitment Agency
    BCL Legal is a legal recruitment agency for solicitors, lawyers and all types of solicitor and legal jobs in Manchester, Liverpool, Preston, Leeds, Sheffield, Newcastle, Yorkshire, the North West and North East UK.
  • Mortgage Comparisons
    Are you looking for a competitive remortgage? Mortgage Street Mortgage Comparisons aims to help you decide on the most appropriate remortgage available. Don't trust your decision to mortgage comparison tables on faceless sites. In mortgage matters you need absolute certainty. Automated mortgage comparison sites rarely give the full picture. Learn more about Mortgage Comparisons

    Archived employment related stories in the media

    Biggest villain in the application drama. The resume, a once exclusively professional device that has become so common among teenagers that it is beginning to corrupt college applications ...More from the Washington Post

    Changing jobs? Watch out for these mistakes. Thinking about making a career move? Many people are their own worst enemies when it comes to changing jobs. Here are some common mistakes and some suggestions that will help you get the job you want in half the time ...More from Biz Journals

    You're never too young for the real world. "They expect to get a big job and get promoted immediately," a manager answered. I had asked a group of managers what experiences they have had with young people in the workplace ...More from Biz Journals

    Teachers: Stressed or stroppy? Are teachers overworked? Or have they got a cushy deal? BBC education correspondent Mike Baker investigates ...More from the BBC

    Students 'need protection of unions'. It is claimed students who work in bars or fast food restaurants need union protection more than any other employees in the UK. TUC president Tony Young has told the annual conference of the National Union of Students that too few students are members of a union. He claims fewer than one in five workers under the age of 29 belong to a union, with students not bothering to sign up once they leave college ...More from Ananova

    'Hands-on' teacher training is booming. A record number of people sign up for an "on-the-job" teacher training programme designed to get the over-24s into the classroom ...More from the BBC

    New push to get British workers reading. Employers are urged to help the many workers in England who cannot read, write or add up properly ...More from the BBC

    Jobs: 80,000 UK teachers 'have never taught'. More than 80,000 qualified teachers have never taught in a school, it has emerged. Official statistics show that 83,400 people held teaching certificates they have never used. John Dunford, general secretary of the Secondary Heads Association (SHA), has told the union's annual conference shortages were destined to be a problem for "many years to come" ...More from Ananova

    National Union of Students says students would be better off on the dole. A student outside London living on the largest available loan has to survive on 29.11 a week, reports The Guardian. By comparison, the jobseekers' allowance for 18-to-24-year-olds provides 42 a week ...More from What The Papers Say

    Heading out of the classroom. Claire Owens - who quit teaching after six years to go back to the classroom as a journalism student - tells BBC News Online why she did it ...More from the BBC

    UK working class students leaving university with heavier debts. The National Audit Office says working class students leave university with bigger debts than their middle class counterparts. They say the Government should do more to help poor undergraduates cope with the cost of doing a degree. In addition they want universities to set up "job shops" to help them find part-time work ...More from Ananova

    Supermarket sweep nets four new teachers. A UK headteacher has recruited four new teachers after setting up a stall in his local supermarket. David Wilmot spent two days collecting applications from shoppers. He followed up every lead and has now filled all but one of the vacancies ...More from Ananova

    Computing students downgrade their desires. With the sector in crisis, the next generation of IT professionals are fearing the worst. Some are beginning to rethink their career priorities ...More from the Financial Times

    Bad spellers should search elsewhere. Job seekers have misspelled the word secretary an amazing 15 times during searches of an online careers website. Spellings ranged from 'secreatarie' to 'sectary', while the words receptionist and manager were also incorrectly typed in, often as 'recepshionist' or 'managar'. Online careers publisher Fish4jobs said more than 1,000 people spelled common job titles incorrectly in recent weeks ...More from Ananova

    UK teacher shortages `worst for 36 years'. Teacher shortages are at their worst level for 36 years, Ofsted chief Mike Tomlinson claims. Four in 10 teachers now leave the profession before they have completed three years in the classroom, he said ...More from Ananova

    Some job hunters are stupid says recruitment expert. A recruitment agency manager says some job-hunters are stupid after a massive increase in bizarre answers on application forms. One would-be lorry driver said he could drive a truck, as long as it was not orange. Steve McMahon, a manager with recruitment agency LMR, says silly answers like this could stop you getting a job. Another candidate gave a window cleaner as his reference, but when asked for a contact number said the man had died ...More from Ananova

    UK Teachers' leader John Dunford says it has been the "worst year on record" for recruitment. Following a study of all 168 local education authorities in England and Wales by The Independent which found 4,600 vacancies in state schools, Mr Dunford, of the Secondary Heads' Association, has warned that it will be impossible to fill all of the vacant posts ...More from What The Papers Say

    Employers, business schools honing in on workers' e-mail writing skills? Chain letters and silly jokes aren't the problem: It is the incomplete sentences, misspellings and rambling thoughts flying through cyberspace in the name of doing business ...More from the Los Angeles Daily News

    Employers 'not childcare friendly'. The majority of working parents say their employers still do not help them with childcare provision, a survey suggests. Only 11% said their employer helped with childcare, while 31% viewed their employer as "not family friendly", a Mori poll of 587 parents of children aged 0 to 14 years showed. ...More from the BBC

    UK Department for Education and Employment to merge with Department of Social Security to become Department for Work. "We want to show the link between receiving benefits and finding work. We have got to move away from the passive payment of benefit to active help for people to be more independent" - an unnamed minister, quoted in The Mirror ....More from What The Papers Say

    UK Education Secretary David Blunkett admits he made teacher recruitment crisis worse. In an interview with The Independent Mr Blunkett says "If I had my time again I would have liked to have had the package of measures for recruitment at least a year earlier." ....More from What The Papers Say

    Luton university is just the job for employment. The first official ranking reveals a number of institutions with a 100 per cent employment rate in the graduate jobs market ...More from the Times

    "Why Can't You Find A Job In This Economy?"

    By Guest Writer Deborah Brown

    I hear a lot of people say that they have to stay in a job they dislike because there are no available jobs today. They tell me to look around and see the layoffs, see all the people out of work, and see the companies whose earnings are lower. How can they possibly look for something else? They should just be grateful for what they have.

    Yes, the economy is worse today than it was 2 years ago, but is that a reason to stay in a job that is making you unhappy? You can give into the notion that it cannot happen for you, or you can do something about it. Which way do you want it to go?

    So, how do you find a job in this economy? Follow these easy steps.

    1. Believe That It Is Possible To Find Another Job:

    This is the first and most important step, as believing that it is possible will put you on the pathway to making it happen. Sure there are layoffs in today's economy. And, people you know still have not found jobs since they were let go. I am not saying it will be easy, or will not take some time, but that does not mean that it cannot happen. Believe that it can, and put steps in place to make it a reality.

    2. Stop Listening To Other People Who Say There Are No Jobs:

    There are still plenty of companies looking for good people, and you are one of the people they want. People sometimes say that it can not be done because of their own fears or misfortunes. Maybe they have wanted another job for a long time, but have been afraid to do anything about it. Or, maybe they have been looking for a while with no luck. So what they are really saying is "I am afraid I will not find another job", or "Finding a job has been difficult for me."

    Each person's search is different and your experience may be more positive that those who are afraid or have had trouble. Once you have this perspective, you can see that that there is no real evidence that no jobs exist, just other people's opinion about what the job market has been for them. You are not out to save the world, you just need one job.

    3. Update Your Resume:

    This seems simple enough, but I see the resume process as the number one roadblock that keeps people from starting their job search. They wonder "What did I accomplish at my present/last job?" or "Maybe my experience will not be worthwhile to another employer?" Updating your resume can be daunting at first, but once you sit down and think about all the things that you did accomplish, the ideas will start flowing.

    4. Start Researching Companies You Want To Work For:

    Yes, even if this economy you can still say whom you want to work for. Get on the Internet and start looking at the companies that interest you. Write them a letter or send them an e-mail telling them why you want to work for them based on the conclusions you made from researching their company. They will appreciate the time you took to do this, and you may be rewarded with an interview, or even a job!

    5. Get An Action Plan Together:

    By what date do you want to have your new job? What action steps will you take to make this happen? Once you have your job search mapped out, you can move forward. Remember there is no outcome without a goal. And planning on the front end will make your job search easier, and more effective

    6. Get Support:

    Enlist the help of a friend, spouse, coach, etc. Someone who will objectively support you and keep you accountable for your word. Looking for another job can be frustrating, time consuming, and disappointing. You want someone who can support you through the obstacles, both external and internal. Remember that you do not have to conduct a job search on your own.

    7. Reward Yourself:

    Yes, the final reward is a job you love, but there are milestones that can be rewarded along the way. Sent your resume to five employers? Reward! Went on one job interview this week? Reward! When you look back at your job search from your new desk, you will be grateful for the journey, as this is what brought the brand new happy you!

    So, what will it be? You only have one life to live so it might as well be a life you love.

    You can visit Deborah Brown's site at Surpassyourdreams.com, send an e-mail to info@surpassyourdreams.com or call (516) 432-2440

    Interview Tips

    We realise an interview can be a stressful experience, but there is help at hand. Read the following tried and trusted tips carefully and be prepared.

    1. Place a piece of paper and a pen in front of you now.

    2. There are few things worse in life than running late for an important interview. Consider setting the alarm much earlier than usual and giving yourself TOO MUCH time. It will enable you to arrive a little early and you'll have time to collect your thoughts. Write a list of the things that you will have to do on the morning of the interview and the times that you have to do them. Along with the time of the alarm call, write down the time you expect to be finished breakfast, get washed and dressed, get the kids to school etc. and keep to this schedule.

    3. Plan what you are going to wear to the interview well in advance - make sure that you will look smart and tidy. You don't want to be rushing around at the last minute and risk being late.

    4. Try to find out a bit about the company beforehand. Ask family, friends and neighbours and check if there is any information at your local library.

    5. Know what you are going to say to them and try to anticipate the questions they might ask you.

    6. Make eye contact, smile and shake hands firmly and with confidence - first impressions DO matter.

    7. Wait until you're asked to sit down.

    8. Don't slouch in your chair, fidget, swear or smoke. Don't cross your arms, keep them on your lap. Look and be professional.

    9. Keep car keys in your pocket or bag - held car keys may give the impression that you are in a hurry.

    10. Don't keep looking down or away from the interviewer - maintain eye contact.

    11. Don't mumble and don't interrupt the interviewer. Answer questions honestly in a clear and confident voice, but don't sound overconfident or jokey.

    12. Nod occasionally when the interviewer is talking, to show that you are paying attention. Sound enthusiastic about the company and the job.

    13. Ask the interviewer for clarification if you don't understand a question or answer, it could be crucial.

    14. Only after you are offered the position ask more detailed questions about pay, holiday, etc.

    15. Thank them, smile and shake their hand on the way out.
    If all this just makes you more anxious then click here for advice on stress.

    Employment UK

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