After successfully completing a Computer Science degree, Lorraine assumed it would be straightforward enough to find work in the computer industry but the reality was much more difficult. Eight months after graduating, Lorraine was spending every day looking for jobs online but, after completing more than 100 applications, she had still not found work and was becoming increasingly down and anxious about the prospect of finding work. Then her mum got a text about work placements with One Manchester and suggested Lorraine get in touch. Lorraine was unsure about doing an unpaid placement initially but after meeting an adviser she started to realise it might just be the chance to prove herself she needed.
“I lacked a lot of skills including office skills, communication skills, telephone skills and people skills. I’ve lacked confidence all my life and I’ve always found it difficult to talk to people. The only thing I felt I was good at was typing away on the computer. I felt myself slowly giving up on everything as I could not cope without my father around. I felt as if my life no longer had a purpose. I began to think I wasn’t good enough and that I would never find work. I had lost hope and faith.
During the eight-week work placement with the Opportunities Team, I got involved in a variety of administrative tasks and was supported to improve my interview technique. It didn’t lead to a job straight away but when a full-time position came up a couple of months later as an opportunities assistant with the team, I was in the perfect place to apply and I’d already shown people what I could do. Getting the job was amazing.
My role currently involves dealing with referrals from customers looking for training, job opportunities, volunteering and work placements and using my web development skills to manage our employment, skills and opportunities website. I’ve also started to get a caseload of customers to help into training and work which I’m really enjoying.”
Through her work with One Manchester, Lorraine has also introduced her mother and sister to the services on offer, both of who have gone on to gain qualifications and moved into employment as a result of this support.
“Since I became involved with One Manchester my life has never been the same. I have gained a lot of experience within a short space of a year including my Information Advice and Guidance Level Three qualification. My self-esteem has improved and I feel more positive both personally and professionally.
Considering that I studied a computer science degree I now feel that I enjoying working with people and helping them find work so they can feel more confident and positive about their lives. I am motivated daily to work hard and continue to support those who need help. I feel happy knowing that my help makes a little bit of a difference.
Being given a permanent position with One Manchester is the best thing that has ever happened to me.”
I began to think I wasn't good enough and that I would never find work.