Leveraging Work Placements for Career Advancement: A How-To Guide

Sage Education Australia > Blogs > Education Support > Leveraging Work Placements for Career Advancement: A How-To Guide

If you’re ready to advance your career, securing a work placement is your next best move. 

After graduation, those with work experience are more likely to find employment and start earning more. Studies show that 91% of students believe their work placements have prepared them for upcoming opportunities. 

Whether you’re already studying a course or are a seasoned professional wanting a career change, this guide can help you navigate work placements. 

At Sage Education, we believe that everyone should get the chance to experience hands-on training. Our guide below can help you leverage work placements for career advancement to ensure you get the most out of your future employment. 

Why Are Work Placements Important for Your Career?

Earning a successful career journey is more than just completing exams and earning degrees. It requires both theoretical knowledge and hands-on experience, which is where work placements shine. 

Work placements offer a unique chance to gain hands-on experience in a specific industry or role. For example, those taking the Diploma of Early Childhood Education and Care may need to complete at least one week in a vocational placement. 

Vocational education and training is a structured and supervised work experience that directly relates to your field of study. Students gain practical experience, learn industry-specific skills, and gain a deeper understanding of professional practices through these placements.

Work placements allow students to apply their academic knowledge in a real-world setting. This means that you can showcase your skills and experience to future employers. 

How to Choose the Right Work Placement for Career Advancement 

Choosing the right work placement is crucial to your career advancement. Your work placement should contribute to your immediate learning and to your long-term career advancement.

To choose the right work placement, you should: 

  • Define your career goals: You should think about your goals and what you wish to achieve. This can help you learn the right professional skills to achieve those goals and secure your dream job.
  • Align with your field of study: Look for placements that align with your academic or vocational training. This ensures that you can apply and enhance the knowledge you’ve gained. 
  • Take a course: Many courses require you to complete a work placement in order to gain a certificate or diploma. This reward will tell employers that you’re qualified and willing to learn. 
  • Evaluate learning opportunities: Assess the learning opportunities provided by the placement. Taking on responsibilities, contributing to projects, and developing practical skills are all important qualities for a job.

5 Ways to Make the Most Out of Your Work Placement

Once you’ve secured a work placement, it’s time to turn this opportunity into a transformative experience that advances your career. Making the most of your work placement goes beyond completing assigned tasks. It’s about taking every opportunity for learning, growth, and professional development. 

Here are ways to maximise your work experience:  

1. Embrace Proactiveness and Initiative

One of the key elements to a successful work placement is proactiveness. This means you shouldn’t wait for tasks to come to you. Instead, actively seek out opportunities to contribute and learn. Whether it’s volunteering for a challenging project or proposing innovative solutions, taking the initiative demonstrates your commitment and enthusiasm.

This skill is also essential for when you secure a full-time job. Employers can see your determination, meaning they’re more likely to extend your employment contract or turn a placement into an employment relationship. 

2. Have a Curious Mindset

Approach your work placement with a curious mindset. This means asking questions, seeking clarification, and striving to understand the broader context of your tasks. Curiosity not only deepens your understanding of the industry or role but also showcases your genuine interest in the work, making you a valuable asset to the team. 

3. Build Relationships and Network

Your time during the work placement is not just about the tasks at hand, as it’s also about the people you meet. 

Develop relationships with colleagues, supervisors, and other professionals in the organisation. Networking can open doors to mentorship, collaboration, and potential job opportunities in the future.

4. Challenge Yourself and Step Outside Your Comfort Zone

The most significant career growth often happens outside your comfort zone. Don’t shy away from challenging tasks or projects. Instead, embrace opportunities that push your boundaries and allow you to develop new skills. Overcoming challenges during your work experience not only builds your resilience but also adds valuable experience to your professional resume.

5. Document Your Achievements and Learnings

Keep a record of your achievements, completed tasks, and lessons learned during your work placement. This documentation serves as tangible evidence of your contributions and can be invaluable when updating your resume or discussing your experiences in future interviews. Reflecting on your journey also helps you identify areas for personal and professional improvement.

Why You Should Choose Sage Education to Advance Your Career

There are several courses that can help you secure a full-time job in the future. To find the course for you, it’s essential to choose a Registered Training Organisation (RTO) that offers vocational training courses. 

Here at Sage Education, we have helped over 3000 graduates find a specific role in their dream career. Whether it’s completing the Diploma of Community Services to work in the aged care industry or completing a First Aid course, you can find something that suits your long-term goals. 

Sage Education will organise your vocational placement when you’re ready. Once you meet the requirements of the course and have gained practical skills, we will find work experience that best matches your expectations. 

We encourage you to embrace the lessons learned, celebrate your achievements, and let your work placement be the key to your professional success! 

Enrol With Sage Education 

Now you know the benefits of work placements for your career, it’s time to study your dream course with Sage Education! 

If you’re curious about the placements we have to offer, contact us directly. We can help you enrol in one of our courses with first-hand experience. It’s our job to offer the best support regarding your future employment. 

Put these insights into action and take charge of your career!

Copyright 2023 Sage Education Australia | All Rights Reserved