Tuesday, 5 June 2012
In 12 months time...
So, the scary fact is that in twelve months time, I and many other OT-to-be's will be job hunting as newly qualified occupational therapists (that is, if I am successful in passing the final year... GULP). It seems that everybody is pretty terrified about the prospects of entering the job market, especially as each time you turn on the television or read the newspaper, you can't escape the public sector cuts and the challenges that the private sector is facing in terms of growth and development. To put it bluntly, it's a pretty scary time for us OTs along with the rest of the UK.
To try and make sense of those fears, last month's May edition of OTnews has provided some very useful articles which are helpful for newly qualified OTs in approaching the current job market.
In particular, the article 'Emerging Markets' by Andrew Mickel highlights that there is a shift away from the traditional NHS rotational posts and towards opportunities in both charity and the private sector. It also identifies that generic roles are increasing due to budget pressures and that some new graduates are taking on work as a lower band OT in order to gain some experience, while still looking for a Band 5 job.
In the article, Fiona Fraser, who is the College of Occcupational Therapists' education manager for student services, identifies that leadership and entreprenurial skills are becoming ever more essential in OT practice, particularly with the changing working environmental. Despite the changes in the job market, the article confirms that the vast majority of graduates find jobs in statuatory health and social care services, although changes of UK policy suggests that emerging settings may be the place to keep your eyes peeled for jobs.
This month's OTnews also has a feature about making the most of your CPD to create your own success. Zoe Parker looks at how to make the most of the available resources provided by COT and BJOT, particularly for newly qualified OTs. Zoe advises reading this resource for guidance for pre-registration OTs to identify your strongest skills, knowledge and aptitudes in order to decide the areas you want to work on for future learning. The link might only work once you've logged on to the COT website:
Another resource that Zoe recommends checking out is the Post Qualifying Framework (2006), which guides your practice according to best current practice, and assists with the planning of future learning for career development, including routes to development in practice, education, management and research. You can download a hard version, from this link: http://www.cot.co.uk/publication/books-z-listing/post-qualifying
Also, check out the Health Professionals Council website and look under the Education section which is designed for students: http://www.hpc-uk.org/education/
The main message in this month's OTnews is to use the skills we've learnt training to be an OT, but also to be prepared to use these skills in different ways. So, it's time to take the plasic cover off OTnews and see how it can help you! Come on guys... twelve months will soon fly by!
The next blog post won't take as long to come up; no more assignments to write or presentations to do...Yay!
P.S. The article on social media and professionalism is worth a read... it might make you reconsider those frapes and detagging some of those dodgy photos...you never know when your potential future employer may indulge in a little facebook stalking! On that note...