INTERVIEW - The secret to getting a great temporary job

INTERVIEW - The secret to getting a great temporary job

We have the opportunity to interview Natalie, a Blue Arrow recruiter who specialises in placing candidates into jobs within the warehouse and logistics industry. We took the chance to get the inside scoop on temporary warehouse jobs. 

What are the most important skills or traits to have when you are working in a temporary warehouse job? 

The most important traits that would benefit you in temporary warehouse work are, the ability to work under pressure and being able to work as an integral part of a team. Having the desire to strive to achieve targets and possessing strong communication skills are also important. 

Do you ask candidates if they have these when they apply for a role? 

Yes, we always ask for some examples of where they may have put those in to practice perhaps in a past working role. While it is ideal to be able to link it to work, it doesn’t always have to be work based experience that they use as an example; we display these skills in many aspects of life whether it be parenting, studying, caring or anything really, so they can draw from any personal experience to demonstrate how they have developed the skill instead if needed. 

If you had to pick one top skill or trait that is a real advantage what would it be?

In the warehouse industry, the ability to work to targets is the best one to talk about, in some ways it can be the hardest skill to demonstrate with examples because it is quite an industry specific skill and if a candidate has been out of work for a while they may find it hard to think of an example, but targets are extremely important in this industry so it is worth talking about in some sort of context.

It is important to understand that while these are all desirable skills, they are not set in stone and if you are unsure of how they apply to you don’t let it discourage you from applying or coming to talk to us. Usually by spending time with a candidate we can assess how we perceive them and if we feel that they are confident or if they are good communicators, if they are outgoing or if they are determined to succeed. We are always working in the candidates interests to help secure a role, striving to find the positives and communicating our observations to the employer.

How important is work experience over educations in the warehouse industry?

It is actually really important, unlike an industry such as catering where your qualifications and education are needed for progressing, the warehouse industry is all about on the job experience. If a candidate can show that they have relevant work experience in a warehouse setting or even in a similar environment, then they do have a competitive edge over others applying for the role who maybe have never worked in a warehouse or in a manual role before. 

What can candidates do to increase their chances of securing a great temporary warehouse position?

Firstly, have a well-structured CV, it doesn’t have to be the best CV in the world but having it structured clearly and in a logical order will really help. The other thing that people don’t realise is that when you are applying through an agency like Blue Arrow it is always most effective if you call the branch after you have submitted your CV online.  We get so many CV’s and often we are trying to fill the placement asap. So, if you call us we can find your CV and often process it immediately for you so you get a boost above others who might not have the initiative to call. 

When you call us, remember that the minute we answer the phone you should be treating it like the 1st stage of an interview with the employer. We are assessing you the whole time and we feed our observations on to the employer when we put you forward for the role so be upbeat, happy and confident. Speak with a smile and have a professional attitude. 

What should a candidate consider before applying for a temporary warehouse job?

Consider the skills that the employer is looking for, look for the essential skills that are listed first because if they are asking for a particular forklift license and you do not have it, it doesn’t matter how good you are at other things, if you do not meet the essential criteria you will not be put forward for the position. 

Remember to check the location of the job and make sure you can reliably get to work and back every day, think about transport options and travel time allowances. Lastly visualize, can you see yourself doing the job every day? Is it you? 

What should a candidate always try to communicate in an interview?

Without a doubt, passion and willingness to learn should be something you display in your interview. We are looking for candidates who really want to be there, who want to succeed and do the best job they can. 

Have a great answer lined up when you are asked why you want this job. We want to know, why this job over any other so just saying “I need the cash” isn’t what we are looking for.

 Don’t forget to let your interviewer know if you have any pre-booked commitments that may affect your work availability. 

What is the secret to success in a temporary warehouse job?

The key to success in temporary warehouse work is 100% effort in and you will get 100% back. We give out a handbook at the beginning of a placement and this tells you exactly how to succeed in your temporary role, if you follow the instructions and the procedures you can’t go wrong. 

After 12 weeks in the role you become eligible for a pay increase and even a permanent contract, if available, so it really is in your best interest to put in as much effort as possible right from the start. 

How can a candidate make the best impression at work?

Work hard and minimise your absences. Build relationships with your colleagues and your team leaders. 

Think permanent, not temporary. If you go in there with a positive attitude of long term permanent work your behaviour will reflect this attitude and those responsible for hiring will see that you are dedicated and enthusiastic.