Jacobs Media Group is honoured to be the recipient of the 2020 Queen's Award for Enterprise.

Change of direction

08 April 2002 by
Change of direction

Question:

"I am at a period in my career where I am unsure of the direction I wish to take. I have 16 years experience within the catering industry qualified up to head chef level. I am also qualified as a lecturer and assessor for higher education and have just finished part-time teaching within a catering department.

I have always wanted to get into contract catering, but after many applications I ‘ve been unsuccessful. At the moment I work for an agency but would really like to find permanent work."

Liz, Leicester

What the expert says

Ian Hall, director of human resources, Aramark

!](#)
"With the background you describe, I am surprised you have been unsuccessful in your applications to contract catering companies. I am not sure where you are located in the country, or what kind of positions you've applied for, but it sounds to me that perhaps it's your actual applications rather than your experience or suitablity for the job that may be holding you back. There are a few simple steps you can make to boost your application to truly reflect your skills: - Make your letter of application as interesting and eye-catching as possible. Remember that your covering letter is your first point of contact with your potential employer - Polish up your CV and always accentuate the positive. If it is for a chef position, make sure you put a prominent focus on your practical skills and achievements. In other words, make sure whoever reads it knows why you are the right person for the job. -
Be realistic about the positions you are applying for. Don't overreach or oversell yourself. I fyou have confidence in your ability to progress in contract catering then be prepared to get a toe on the ladder and work your way up.
Good luck with your career" More useful advice on preparing effective covering letters and CVs can be found in our [Careers Advice](http://http://www.caterer.com/jobs/CareerAdvice.asp) section Do you have a question for our experts? [E-mail us now, help is at hand.
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Jacobs Media Group is honoured to be the recipient of the 2020 Queen's Award for Enterprise.

The highest official awards for UK businesses since being established by royal warrant in 1965. Read more.

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