As with searching and applying for any job, it’s worth taking the time before you start to prepare. Not only will this help you to save time, it will give you the opportunity to familiarise yourself with what’s involved with being a personal assistant, and the type of roles that appeal to you.
On this page we’ve compiled a list of some of the best places to look for a job as a personal assistant. We’ve also shared advice on how you can get to know what is involved with the role and provided a typical framework for the recruitment process.
Where to find a job
There are lots of ways to find a job as a personal assistant, and here are a few examples of where to look. You may also be able to find a job through friends or family.
Personal assistant networks, registers or banks run by local councils, health or support organisations - you can register on these when you’re looking for work. Some may require you to undertake security checks or training before they add you to their list. Find your local support organisation and click on ‘Find support’.
Visit the ‘Find a job website’ and search for ‘social care’.
Online job sites, for example, such as Indeed.
If you are at college or university, try the student union jobs boards
Local shop windows or notice boards.
Your local job centre.
Local voluntary sector organisations that work with disabled people.
Understanding the role before you apply
The individual employer will have an idea of the type of person they’re looking for and an outline of what they want their personal assistant to do. This will usually be set out in a job description.
Before applying for a job, read the advert and job description carefully so that roles and responsibilities are clear and can be met, for example, applying for a job that involves going swimming twice a week wouldn’t be beneficial if the personal assistant doesn't like water.
An employer’s needs can change, so it’s important to review the job description regularly to make sure that everything works well between the personal assistant and the employer.
Being flexible is essential, however if the personal assistant feels they're asked to do anything outside of the expectations of the role, it’s vital this is communicated with the employer to clear up any issues and continue a good working relationship.
Personal assistants may be asked to provide a CV (a written overview of your skills, experience and qualifications) or fill in an application form, so that the individual employer can find out more about you and your experience. If your CV meets the individuals criteria, you should be invited to an interview, so that they can get to know you better.
The interview may be very informal and could be held at a different location to where you’ll be actually working. Personal assistant should be themselves, talk about relevant experience and qualities and be prepared to ask questions. The National Careers Service has interview hints and tips on their website.
Personal assistant should be contacted to let them know if they were successful or not. If a personal assistant hasn’t heard anything after a few weeks, contact the interviewee. If unsuccessful, they may want to ask for feedback to help with future interviews.
If successful, personal assistants should agree a start date, and sign an employment contract, so that they can be sure of what the job involves.