Finding and Applying for Jobs relating to Politics and Applied Social Science

Job Search 

Make a start by looking at the Finding a Job pages on this site.  Each job area has specialist websites that will bring together relevant opportunities. Some examples relevant to Politics graduates are listed in Suggested Links.

Journals and Blogs 

As well as advertising vacancies, professional journals and blogs can help you to keep up to date with the industry news, policy developments and can even help you to identify organisations to whom you could make speculative job applications. Some relevant journals and blogs for Politics related areas include Careers Group: Peace, Politics and PolicyCareers Group: Getting into International DevelopmentThird Sector Blog and the Guardian politics pages.

Professional Associations

These associations can help you keep up to date with developments, build a network of contacts and include job listings pages. Relevant professional associations include Political Studies Association, International Political Science Association, Local Government Association and Public Affairs Networking. Directories of companies to whom you can also target speculative applications can be found through the Keele University Directory and locally through Sheffield Help Yourself.

CV Advice

See the Parliamentary Feedback Scheme for feedback on CVs and covering letters submitted for Parliamentary Assistant and Case Worker positions and general advice on compiling CVs and covering letters from the Working 4 MP site.

Interviews

Interview questions will be focused around the competences and skill requirements listed in the person specification. Example questions for politics related roles are listed below. Also see Working 4 MP for interview tips for parliamentary roles.

  • Why did you apply for this position and what is your understanding of the role?
  • What skills and experience do you have, that would make you a suitable candidate for the position?
  • In the role you will be required to respond in writing to constituents in a courteous manner, why is this important?
  • Imagine you have been asked to write a press release about an MP's visit to a local school.  What process would you follow and how would you ensure it is written effectively?

 

  • Please tell me about a successful piece of research you have carried out recently
  • Please give an example of a time you have had to organise yourself and others.
  • What is your understanding of what is meant by excellent communication skills? When have you put this understanding into practice?
  • How has your degree prepared you for this job?
  • Please can you give an example of when you have engaged and influenced others?
  • Please tell me about a time you have been involved in a political or social campaign. What steps did you take to ensure the campaign was a success?

Interview Tasks / Assessment Centres

Interviews commonly include one or more tasks aiming to assess your competence for the role and allow the recruiters to observe your strengths and behaviours. Tasks that could occur in an assessment centre for a politics related role include:

  • A timed presentation on a topic relevant to the role, which you are usually given in advance with time to prepare
  • Group exercise involving working together towards a common aim, such as selecting a project to receive funding or planning a campaign
  • Blogging or writing exercise involving writing a blog article on a political topic of interest or a subject relevant to the organisation
  • Policy recommendation exercise, involving analysing a number of policy options, providing a written argument as to which one you would select and why
Last modified: 
Thursday, April 9, 2015 - 15:52