Ambitions

Interview Blog Image

It’s often helpful to remember that an interview is just as much about you deciding if this role/company is right for you, as it is about the employer deciding if you’re the right person for the job.  Usually, an interviewer will give you the opportunity to ask questions towards the end of the interview, and asking the right questions can demonstrate your interest in the role and impress the interviewer, whilst also giving you some all-important insight.

You want to leave the interviewer with a positive impression and finish on a high note, so preparing your questions in advance is just as important as preparing for the rest of the interview. You might find it useful to have noted down your chosen questions beforehand, then if one of your questions is no longer relevant because it’s been covered, or a new question develops naturally during the course of the interview, you can write it down.

Here are some of our top tried and tested questions which you might find useful:

  1. Why is this position available?

Finding out more about the history of the role; why it’s been created or is vacant, will give you an idea of whether you’re walking into an existing team where a precedent has already been set, or if the role is being newly created due to company growth, the part you’ll play in helping the company realise it’s plans for the future.

  1. Describe a typical day in this role?

We often find that looking a list of duties on a job description can quite often misrepresent what a job will actually entail on a daily basis. This is a great question to ask to really get a feel for what an average day will look like. For example, if a job involves a mixture of administration and customer services, do you expect that to be 50/50, or are you going to be doing data entry for 90% of the day with just a small amount of time on the phone.

  1. Who are the main people or groups I’ll be working with?

Every company is structured differently, and job roles with the same title can vary greatly between companies. This question could help you to understand where the role fits in, and who the main stakeholders will be.

  1. What’s the most challenging aspect of the role?

This question can give you an idea of what you might come up against in the role, whether it’s having to deliver a complex project on a tight budget, or learning a new system, to internal politics. It can also open a conversation about your past experiences and how you can use those to help overcome these challenges.

  1. What do you like about working here?

Unless you’re speaking to the owner of the business, you can learn a lot about a company by listening to your interviewer tell you their experiences; from the company’s culture to the path they’ve taken to reach their position now.

  1. What’s the timeline for next steps?

A simple but important question, you’ll want to know what the next stage will be and when you can expect to hear back. Some companies might let candidates know the same day, whereas others may have a much longer turnaround, so it’s best to know where you stand from the outset.

Overall, our advice is to use the opportunity to your advantage, and devise the best questions which balance finding out information you genuinely care about together whilst demonstrating your commitment and interest in the position. Just remember to always leave questions about pay, holiday and benefits to the next stage!

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Nov/18

28

Temp of the Month – November 2018 (again!)

Temp of the Month - November 2018

It was an unprecedented month, as for the first time ever we have multiple winners!

Joining Christopher Symeonidis from Grantham; we’d also like to congratulate Sorin Pintilie from Colchester for winning Temp of the Month!

Sorin is extremely hard-working, always willing to cover last minute Days/Night Shifts and is thought of very highly by the client.

Well done Sorin!

 

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Nov/18

26

Temp of the Month – November 2018

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Congratulations to November’s Temp of the Month; Christopher Symeonidis from Grantham!

It was our client, Environcom, who approached us and recommended Christopher for the monthly award, stating that he is one of the hardest workers they’ve ever seen!

Pictured is Ambition’s Cheila Loucao (right) and Environcom’s Kerry McConnell (left) presenting Christopher with his certificate and award.

Thanks Christopher, keep up the good work!

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Nov/18

22

Why You Should Be Making Sure You’re Drinking Enough Water

Water blog image

Our bodies are 60% water and advice from the NHS is that we should be drinking around 6 to 8 glasses of fluid per day, which is around 1.4 to 1.6 litres. Other sources, such as the European Food Safety Authority suggest 2 litres + is the optimum amount. Other factors such as exercise, heat and body size have an impact too. What most people can agree on though, is that water is a cheaper, healthier and easier option than reaching for a soft drink, which can often be laden with sugar and nasties. Are you getting enough? You could be missing out on these potential benefits.

  1. Fewer headaches

Dehydration can cause headaches or even migraines in some people.

  1. Increased energy and less fatigue

Water fuels your muscles, and your performance during your workout could be affected if you aren’t hydrated enough. In addition, it helps prevent injuries as your joints are better lubricated.

  1. It boosts your metabolism

It’s been said that drinking water before a meal can boost how quickly your body burns calories by up to 30%. Another theory is that your body can confuse feeling hungry with being hungry, so by drinking water before a meal might mean you don’t overeat.

  1. It boosts productivity

Our brains are made up of mostly water, so by staying hydrated we can ensure our concentration and memory capacity is optimised.

  1. Improved digestion

Water is important for the removal of toxins and waste from the body, essential for a healthy gut and regular bowel movements.

  1. It boosts your immune system

In addition to flushing out toxins from the body, you’re more likely to get ill if you’re dehydrated.

  1. Gives you good skin

Obviously, water adds moisture to your skin, which can improve skin conditions and can even be a wrinkle-buster!

  1. Puts you in a good mood

If you’re functioning well, you’re going to be feeling good! If your body is in the best condition, you’ll likely look and feel better too.

So how can you make sure you’re getting enough each day? If it’s the taste that’s putting you off, try adding fresh fruit – such as slices of lemon, berries or even cucumber, for flavour. If you’re on the go, buy a reusable bottle to carry around with you and fill up as needed. You can even buy bottles which tell you how much water you should have drank by a certain time to stay on target, or simply set an hourly reminder on your mobile phone.

Have you got a top tip for staying hydrated? Let us know in the comments below.

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Nov/18

15

A Guide to Living and Working in Newark

Newark Nottinghamshire

Newark-on-Trent is a thriving market town in the East Midlands with a population of circa 35,000, and is located around 20 miles from Nottingham. It stands on the River Trent and on the ancient Great North Road (now the A1), and is a town steeped in history.

One of the most prominent landmarks in Newark is undoubtedly Newark Castle. Partially ruined, its remains and gardens on the banks of the river are a great place to learn more about the town’s history and take in the picturesque views. Another key landmark is the Town Hall, which is also home to the Newark Museum; one of two museums in the town, along with the Civil War Museum.

Newark’s pretty, cobbled Georgian market square is said to be one of the finest in the country, so why not pay a visit on a market day to see it in action? Stalls range from fruit and veg to collectables and antiques. There are some great opportunities for shopping in the rest of the town, with a mixture of high street retail stores and independent retailers.

Newark also offers some great choices for eating out, plenty of cafes and restaurants with a range of cuisine to suit all tastes and budgets.

For evening entertainment, check out what’s on at Newark Palace Theatre. Built in the 1920’s, today it plays host to a range of shows from comedy, dance and live music, including a very popular pantomime in the run-up to Christmas.

Newark Showground is host to the largest antiques fair in Europe and attracts visitors from all over the country and further afield. Held every other month, browsing the 84 acres of stalls is enough to keep anyone busy.

Our Address

Our Newark branch is conveniently located close to all the amenities of the town centre, opposite the main St Mark’s Place multi-storey car park:

21 Lombard Street
Newark
Notts
NG24 1XG

Tel: 01636 611320

Ambitions Personnel Jobs in Newark

Newark’s excellent transport links make it a first choice for many of the country’s big-name employers, meaning there are plenty of work opportunities available. We recruit for permanent and temporary roles across a wide variety of industries, from warehousing, factory and driving, to office-based roles at all levels, including HR, marketing and accounts.

Entry level roles in industrial sectors such as factory and warehousing are usually paid at the National Minimum Wage / National Living Wage rates, but can sometimes attract a premium for overtime or shifts. Large employers will often use a recruitment agency to help with peaks in demand, and often offer permanent contracts to agency workers.

The average starting salary for an Administrator is between £16,000 and £18,000 per annum.

Getting around

Whilst most of Newark and neighbouring suburbs are accessible on foot, there are buses connecting to the surrounding area and villages, operating out of the town’s new bus station.

Newark is located on two main train routes, the East Coast Main Line which connects London to Scotland, and the busy Leicester – Nottingham to Lincoln line. Newark’s two train stations, Newark Northgate and Newark Castle, are both an easy walk from the town centre. The average journey time to London Kings Cross is just 1hr25mins.

Newark’s close proximity to the A1 makes for easy links to the North and South, with Peterborough and Sheffield both less than an hour’s drive away. The recently improved A46 has reduced journey times to Nottingham in one direction, and to Lincoln in the other.

House Prices / Rent

The average house price in Newark is around £186,347, with a range of period and new build property on the market. Average rental costs currently stand at around £576 per month.

 

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Nov/18

9

Reduce Your Plastic Use in Just One Day

Plastic Waste

The harmful effects of our plastic usage have been widely reported in the media this year. Shocking images of marine life living in oceans polluted by the 8 million tonnes of plastic that end up there each year have gone viral across the internet. But what can you do to help? Read on for how, in just one day, you can make a few small changes which could really make a difference. Have you got some suggestions for us? Let us know in the comments below.

07:00AM IN THE BATHROOM

Give plastic toothbrushes the brush off!
According to statistics, the average person will use over 300 toothbrushes in their lifetime, so it’s scary to think that plastic toothbrushes never biodegrade and stay in the environment forever. Make the switch to a bamboo toothbrush, the handles biodegrade in around 6 months.

Avoid products containing microbeads
Now banned in the UK since July 2018, but check your bathroom cupboards for any products containing plastic microbeads. Millions of these little beads have been washed down our drains and pose a threat to marine life who mistake the little beads for food.

Reduce packaging waste on your healthcare products
More and more products are on the market now which avoid or reduce the use of plastic packaging. Shampoo bars instead of bottled to good old fashioned bars of soap; with a little bit of research you can find eco-friendly swaps for most of the products you use each day, or check out brands where you can return the packaging to store to be recycled.

08:30AM MORNING CAFFEINE FIX

Bring a reusable cup
Over 7 million coffee cups are thrown away each day in the UK alone! But don’t worry, you don’t have to go without your daily caffeine fix; most cafés and coffee shops will be happy to put your drink in your own cup and many will even give you a discount for doing so.

Use a milkman
Could your home or workplace join the 4% of the population who get their milk delivered by a milkman? Milk is delivered in glass bottles which are reused and recycled.

10:00AM STAYING HYDRATED

Bring a bottle!
Have a reusable refillable water bottle on you whenever you’re out and about. A single person who stops buying single use plastic water bottles can save as many as 170 bottles being produced each year. Sadly, lids from plastic bottles often end up in the stomachs of seabirds.

12:30AM LUNCHTIME

Bring a reusable shopping bag
Popping to the shops for supplies? Don’t forget to take a bag with you and you’ll be saving 5p as well as the environment.

Say no to disposable cutlery
Grabbing lunch on the go? Often you’ll be handed a plastic knife and fork. Say no, and keep a metal cutlery set at work.

Ditch the cling film
Go without and pack your lunch in reusable containers. If you do need an alternative to cling film, foil is a better option as it’s recyclable. There are also new products on the market, such as beeswax wraps, which are reusable and recyclable.

Chewing gum
If gum is your go-to when you want a post-lunch freshen up, you might be surprised to learn (like we were!) that chewing gum is actually plastic. Food store, Iceland, commissioned a survey earlier this year and 85% of the 2,000 people they asked were unaware that most regular gum contains plastic. Check the ingredients and look for natural alternatives.

20:00PM AFTER WORK DRINKS

Straws suck!
Say no to plastic straws! Many bars have made the switch to paper straws, or if you really can’t go without, then buy a reusable straw and take it with you.

Choose your wine carefully
Opt for a wine bottle with a natural cork instead of a rubber stopper or metal screw lids which apparently contain BPA (a chemical used to make plastic).

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Nov/18

2

A Guide to Living and Working in Nottingham

Nottingham Blog Pic

Nottingham is dubbed the capital of the East Midlands; with a population of over 325,000, including some 37,000 students from the two Universities, it’s a city on the up.

Famed for its association with Robin Hood, both the city centre and nearby Sherwood Forest have plenty of attractions relating to this legendary outlaw, to suit all ages, from guided walking tours to visiting the ‘Robin Hood experience’.

Nottingham Castle is currently going through a huge redevelopment and is closed until 2020, when it will re-open as a new visitor attraction. Other historical points of interest surround the city’s link to the textile industry, and specifically lace. Today the Lace Market area has been redeveloped as the cultural quarter, where some of the 19th century buildings still stand as a reminder of its past.

With two indoor shopping centres, many big name brands, plus some excellent independent shops, it’s no surprise Nottingham is in the top 10 UK cities for retail therapy.

Nottingham is also closely linked with sporting success, even gaining the title of the ‘Home of English Sport’ in 2015. Two professional league football teams; Nottingham Forest and Notts County are based not far from the city centre, along with Trent Bridge cricket ground and Holme Pierrepont National Watersports Centre. Ice skating stars Torvill and Dean hail from the city, so you might be inspired to follow in their footsteps and head to the National Ice Centre.

As you’d expect in a large university city, there’s a lively nightlife scene with plenty of bars and clubs to suit all tastes every night of the week. The Motorpoint Arena attracts big-name acts, with plenty of smaller venues for up and coming acts. For something a little different, head to one of the contenders for England’s oldest pub, Ye Olde Trip to Jerusalem, which is partially built into the cave system underneath Nottingham Castle.

Our Address

Our Nottingham branch is based in the centre of the city, less than a 5-minute walk from the Market Square. The nearest car parking can be found at NCP St James Street.

Ambitions Personnel
42a Friar Lane
Nottingham
NG1 6DQ

Tel: 0115 9881555

Ambitions Personnel Jobs in Nottingham

Nottingham is home to many big-name employers, which means that there are some exciting job opportunities no matter what your experience. Salaries are, on average, higher than in other areas of the East Midlands region. We recruit for permanent and temporary roles across a wide variety of industries, from warehousing, factory and driving, to office-based roles at all levels, including HR, marketing and accounts.

Entry level roles in industrial sectors such as factory and warehousing are usually paid at the National Minimum Wage / National Living Wage rates, but can sometimes attract a premium for overtime or shifts. Large employers will often use a recruitment agency to help with peaks in demand, and often offer permanent contracts to agency workers.

The average starting salary for an Administrator is between £17,000 and £20,000 per annum.

Getting around

Nottingham has its own tram system called the Nottingham Express Transit (NET), which connects the centre with the surrounding areas.  Public buses also operate from the city centre to surrounding villages further afield.

Nottingham train station provides links across the East Midlands, and also to cities such as Sheffield and Leeds. Direct trains reach London St Pancras in an average time of just over 2 hours.

Nottingham is also just 15 miles from East Midlands Airport with flights to many domestic and short-haul international destinations, it’s a popular hub for low-cost airlines.

House Prices / Rent

The overall average house price in Nottingham is around £234,541, with the average cost of a 3 bedroom house standing at £202,337. Average rental for a 1 bedroom flat currently stands at £517 per calendar month.  Whilst prices are currently rising steadily, property in Nottingham still comes in well below the national averages.

Interested in what’s available, click through to see our jobs in the city here

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Oct/18

25

Top Tips to Prevent Colds and Flu this Winter

Blog Photo - Chalkboard

The nights are drawing in and there’s a chill in the air; there’s no question that winter is approaching, and with it comes cold and flu season. All of a sudden we’re surrounded by people coughing and sneezing in our workplaces and on our commutes. This year, be prepared with our top tips to stay well this winter and do what you can to safeguard you and your family from getting sick.

Whilst the common cold is caused by a virus, not by the weather, it’s thought that it’s more prevalent in the winter months as the colder conditions allow it to multiply and spread more easily, together with the fact that we are likely to spend more time indoors.  In office environments and shared spaces, the cold and flu virus can be spread easily on desks, telephones, photocopiers and door handles etc.

Whilst there’s no sure fire way to prevent getting sick, now is the time to do what you can and take preventative action! Read on for our top tips:

Boost your immune system

Take care of your body’s natural defences by:

  • Getting plenty of rest and sleep – the body naturally needs more during the darker months
  • Exercise regularly (but don’t overdo it!) – experts recommend around 30 minutes of moderate exercise three times per week
  • Eat plenty of nutrient-rich foods, like fruit and vegetables
  • Relax – being stressed and run down can take its toll on your immune system, take some time out for yourself
  • Quit smoking

Be Hygienic

  • Cough or sneeze into a clean tissue if possible, or at least the crease of your elbow rather than your hand
  • Wash your hands regularly and always after shaking someone’s hand – keep antibacterial gel handy
  • Keep antibacterial wipes in your desk drawer at work and disinfect your desk regularly – including most used items like your keyboard, mouse and phone
  • Avoid touching your face with your hands

Get some fresh air

Wrap up warm and go outside for a walk. This time of year, we can often spend a lot of time indoors with centrally heated or air-conditioned re-circulated air.

Keep your distance

If you see someone coughing and sneezing, keep your distance as much as possible.

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Oct/18

25

Temp of the Month – October 2018

Temp of the Month - October

Congratulations to Fiona James on winning the October 2018 ‘Temp of the Month’ award. Fiona has completed a number of temporary assignments over the past months, and has always proven to be a very reliable and strong temporary administrator. Our client has given us consistently excellent feedback, saying it had re-built her trust in agency staff!

Pictured is Fiona collecting her prize from Ambitions Personnel’s Lee Sargent.

 

 

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Oct/18

19

A Guide to Living and Working in Lincoln

Cathedral_and_Castle_Square_-_geograph.org.uk_-_134108

A new feature for our blog, we’ve put together a series of guides to living and working in the towns and cities where our branches are based. Written by people with the lowdown on all things local, these will be a must-read if you’re considering relocating. First up is our head office location of Lincoln.

Lincoln is most famous for its historic ‘uphill’ quarter. Sitting atop the rather aptly named ‘Steep Hill’, the Cathedral was once the tallest building in the world, and the castle holds one of four original copies of the Magna Carta.  In the uphill and Bailgate areas, there’s plenty of independent cafes, pubs and restaurants to try; once you’ve finished exploring the cobbled streets.

Head down Steep Hill to Lincoln’s High Street and St Marks areas, where you can find many big brand shops along with independent retailers. Nightlife in Lincoln has been much improved since the arrival of the University, with a wide range of bars and clubs to choose from.

Lincoln is currently seeing wide-scale development with a new transport hub, and the current regeneration of the ‘Cornhill Quarter’ in the City Centre.

A visit to Lincoln’s famous annual Christmas Market is a must; held over the first weekend in December, German-style chalets transform the uphill area into a wonderland of festive sights and smells.

Why not also pay a visit to Sincil Bank and soak up the match-day atmosphere and watch Lincoln City Football club in action.

Our Address

Our Head Office is conveniently located just a 5-minute walk from the Train Station, near St. Marks shopping centre.

Ambitions Personnel
Firth Court
Firth Road
Lincoln
Lincs
LN5 7WD

Tel: 01522 546643

Ambitions Personnel Jobs in Lincoln

We’ve been established in Lincoln since 1990, so we know the job market inside out. If you’re considering moving here and want to find out more about the types of roles available then speak to one of our consultants who’ll be happy to help. We recruit for permanent and temporary roles across a wide variety of industries, from warehousing, factory and driving, to office-based roles at all levels, including HR, marketing and accounts.

Entry level roles in industrial sectors such as factory and warehousing are usually paid at the National Minimum Wage / National Living Wage rates, but can sometimes attract a premium for overtime or shifts. Large employers will often use a recruitment agency to help with peaks in demand, and often offer permanent contracts to agency workers.

The average starting salary for an Administrator is between £16,000 and £18,000 per annum.

Getting around

The city centre itself is small enough for everywhere to be accessed by foot. However, if you want to head further afield then Lincoln has a newly regenerated ‘transport hub’, encompassing a brand new bus station and improved links to the train station. The move has created an increase in services in the city, making it easier than ever to get about.

House Prices / Rent

House prices in Lincoln are very reasonable compared to other areas of the UK, which is encouraging if you’re thinking about moving to the city. A 2 bedroom property in the city can be snapped up for around £90,000 – £120,000, whereas average rents are around £500 per month.

If this has piqued your interest in living in the city, and you’d like to know more about the opportunities we have in Lincoln, click through to our jobs page here.

 

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