Many students work part-time whilst at university. Depending on your course, you may be able to work a regular part time job and for others, you may need something more flexible.
You’ll get so much more than money from a part time job. Future employers value part-time work on your CV, which includes valuing part-time work in a sector not related to where you want to work as a graduate.
A job alongside your studies can help you develop & demonstrate skills such as:
- Motivation and drive
- Time management
- Organisational skills
King’s Careers & Employability are here to support you at every stage of your career, including finding part-time work and providing advice and guidance.
In this article:
What can I do?
Part-time vacancies exist in most sectors. However, you’re more likely to find part time work in one of the following areas:
- Hospitality (bars/pubs/cafes/restaurants/food outlets)
- Call centres
- Temporary/seasonal jobs, often in retail or hospitality
Whatever the job, you’ll be gaining the employability skills employers want from graduates.
Where can I look for work?
King’s Talent Bank: Student jobs at King’s are managed by our on-campus job agency - King’s Talent Bank. Register for temporary work within individual departments, as well as external positions.
- Student ambassadors: Work as a student ambassador for King’s, promoting it to prospective students at open days and campus tours. As a student ambassador you'll join a vibrant team and help deliver brilliant events on and off campus.
- Money Mentors are current students at King’s who have a passion for helping their peers by ensuring they are as money savvy as possible. If you’re interested in finding out more about this role, check out details on how to get involved in Who are the Money Mentors and how can they help me?
KCLSU have part-time roles and you can sign up to their mailing list to get the latest opportunities sent to you
You can find part-time jobs at King's CareerConnect; you’ll only be able to access this site after enrolment.
You can access part-time and full-time jobs, internships, book onto careers events and appointments. These opportunities are aimed at King’s students and vacancies are vetted by King’s Career & Employability.
Find out more about looking for work in our KEATS section on Activities for your Successful Job Search.
There are also external job sites, such as:
- Indeed: This is a huge job site. A search for ‘Barista part-time’ (working in a coffee shop) brings up over 200 vacancies in London.
- Monster: This is another massive site, searchable by location and job title. Look around and try different job titles.
- If you’d like to become a private tutor, you can find out more about how to do this in Save the Student: How to become a private tutor.
What are recruitment agencies?
Recruitment agencies act as intermediaries and place workers into roles with different organisations (such as King’s Talent Bank). You register your details with an agency, and they contact you when a suitable role becomes available. You should be able to specify the type of work you are interested in and the hours you are available.
Important to know: Be aware that a reputable agency should never ask you to pay any money to register with them. Find a list at Agency Central which hosts a database of reputable recruitment agencies.
How do I look for work?
Don’t be afraid to ask directly in local bars, cafes and shops. Not only does it show initiative, but many employers have part-time work throughout the year but may not advertise constantly. Be proactive. Bars, shops and cafés often advertise vacancies in their windows and some public libraries have notice boards where private work is requested.
Also look on company websites such as supermarkets, retail, bar and catering chains such as Pret, Café Nero, Wetherspoons, McDonalds, Tesco. Again, all of these are highly respected by future employers – they are busy, international environments and it shows you aren’t afraid to work hard.
Many employers like to recruit part-time student staff and they’ve shared their top tips to help you find fulfilling work that will add to your CV and experience.
- Know your timetable: Know this before you apply – it’ll save your time and everyone else’s if you are able to set out when and for how many hours you can work, and will also make a good first impression with potential employers.
- Take the time to choose a job that’s right for you: You might fancy a zero-hours flexible contract, or maybe you want the same hours each week. The choice is yours so make sure you apply for the kind of contract that you can actually work with.
- Important to know: In a zero-hours contract, you will be not be guaranteed a set number of hours a week. This gives you more flexibility to pick and choose when you want to work, but it may make it more difficult to plan your finances.
- Most importantly, watch out for burn out: Your degree and your wellbeing are more important than any part-time work – remember to give yourself time to rest and to socialise between studying and working and prioritise your mental wellbeing.
King’s Careers & Employability can help you when looking for a job during your studies, exploring internships, as well as your longer term career plans beyond university. You don’t have to be in your final year to get support from Careers! The service offers support no matter what stage of your studies, offering CV checks, events, workshops, 1:1 guidance, interview support and more.
For more information about how Careers & Employability can help, check them out across their platforms:
Can I work while on a student visa?
If you’re studying at King’s on a Tier 4/Student Visa, there are limitations on the kinds of work you can do and the number of hours per week. For example, you can’t be self-employed on this type of visa.
Details around how much you can work should be on your visa, so we advise always checking this first. Please also refer to these sources of guidance:
If you are at all unsure about what you’re allowed to do and you’d like to find part-time work, please contact the Visa & International Advice team for support & guidance before starting any work.
What money & earnings can I expect?
How much can I expect to earn?
The National Minimum Wage is the minimum amount that employer must legally pay you per hour. Other than charities, some schools, or work placements that are a part of your course, employers are not legally allowed to pay you less than this rate.
The rates differ according to your age. The latest rates can be found on the Government Website
Some employers will also adhere to the London Living Wage, though this is not compulsory.
Will I be taxed on any part-time work?
Everybody can earn a certain amount before they start paying Income Tax - this is known as your Personal Allowance. If you start working you should learn more about taxes and how this may affect you and your earnings, as well as about obtaining a National Insurance number, if you don’t already have one.
Find out more about this in our articles:
Be wary of scams and fake jobs on any job site. If in any doubt, do a Google search, find out what other people say about them and check their web-presence (a company with no website is often a warning sign).
If it’s not in a large, well-known organisation, bring a friend to the interview with you, and come and talk to us first.
For more guidance on scams and how to be aware and avoid them, please refer to some of articles on this topic:
How can I balance working with studying?
Working part-time can be a great way to fund your way through university and give you a number of useful skills to put on your CV. However, it’s important that this work doesn’t interfere with your studies.
Generally, we recommended that you do no more than 15 hours of part-time work per week, in addition to your studies.
One of the major skills required to manage a job alongside your studies is organisation and time management.
Here are a few things to consider:
- Be realistic about how much time you can offer towards a job. You need to consider course contact time, time for assignments and private study as well as time to rest and switch off.
- Don’t miss lectures or seminars! Although you might tell yourself you will catch up later, it is often not the case and you may quickly fall behind. Your studies should be your priority.
- Wellbeing. It is important you prioritise your health and wellbeing, and so you should also set time aside for exercise and socialising with friends.
- Plan ahead. You may find how much time you have varies throughout the year. It is worth considering cutting back during exam times or periods of time when you have many coursework submissions. Anticipating these busier periods will enable you to be honest with your employer and they may be able to consider this when giving you your rota/offering shifts.
If you need any support or advice during your studies or after you graduate, the Careers & Employability Service is a great place to get support in finding job and to discover what careers are available in various fields. They hold events throughout the year to highlight opportunities available for students or talks from professionals working in the field.
Find out more in How can King's Careers & Employability help me?
Fancy volunteering? If you’re not necessarily looking to earn money but looking for some valuable experience and/or extra-curricular activity, you may want to check out volunteering opportunities. Find out more in How can I give back and support my community?