More Israelis seek help to crack UK job market
INCREASING NUMBERS of Israelis are turning to Jewish employment support organisation Resource to help them into the job market.
Fifty-five Israelis are on the books of the Finchley-based charity, accounting for 22 per cent of its client base. Their average age is 39 and their professions include finance, law, IT, marketing, teaching and events organising.
Resource chief executive Victoria Sterman attributes the growing demand partly to the charity’s heightened social media profile. “A lot of them learn about us through Facebook.”
She finds the Israelis “very highly motivated and qualified” but, in some cases, oblivious to cultural differences.
“They often come to us with an American-style, one-page ‘resume’ which is not suitable for the UK recruitment market. Typically, we will help clients rewrite their CV to make it attractive to British recruiters.
“They also don’t have the concept of a formal interview. They go to an interview in jeans and are incredibly expres- sive. We literally have to tell some of them to sit on their hands.”
There is also the issue of military service. Good skills are acquired which would burnish a CV. “But could the fact they have served in the IDF jeopardise their application to certain employers? If the experience is relevant, then we usually recommend they include it,” Ms Sterman said. Overall, Resource registered 400 clients in 2016, 70 per of whom found employment. The remainder have benefited from coaching and support, such as appointments with an adviser, seminars, networking evenings and a mock interview. The charity estimates the free assistance to be worth around £2,200 per person, equivalent to £880,000 annually. Around 200 vacancies were advertised on its jobs board, which can be viewed by anyone on the Resource website.
Recently advertised jobs have been for a surveyor, solicitor and restaurant manager, as well as positions with the United Synagogue, Holocaust Memorial Day and Jami.
Some of those who did not find work were “aiming too high or are very choosy”, Ms Sterman said. Others had been pushed by family and were probably not ready for the job market.
Where financial circumstances allowed, she recommended volunteering to those unable to find paid work. “It can give them a foot in the door, something to talk about in an interview and put on a CV.”
To increase its reach, the charity has set up the Resource Community. The idea is for people it has helped to give back by alerting Resource to vacancies in their companies, or jobs they hear about within their communities.
They can also pass on information relevant to job-seekers. “For example, a client recently told us about a specific jobs fair for Israelis.”
A further element is improved networking through the contacts of those in employment. “The hidden market is where the jobs are and networking is the only way to find out about them.”
They don’t have the concept of a formal interview’