Applying for un-skilled jobs
While many international students dream of getting a study-specific job during their studies in Denmark, it sometimes proves to be a challenging objective to reach – both to find it but also it can take a while to land it since there are many applicants. Therefore, some look for un-skilled jobs, for example in the service sector, in order for them to get by financially while studying. AAU Career has put together a small guide on how to create an application when applying for an unskilled job in Denmark.
CV and application
Any cv and cover letter should be targeted the job you are applying for. When applying for un-skilled jobs, a one-page cv, including a short profile text, is often adequate as an application – this means that you do not have to make a separate cover letter. Here, it is important to only mention relevant experiences, such as previous jobs, e.g. as a waiter or bike messenger, and volunteer work. Employers in Denmark like to know if you have done volunteer work as it says a lot about you as a person. You need to elaborate what competences you have gained in the job as e.g. a cleaner – such as hard working, responsible and smiling. You have learned something in ALL jobs, and it is necessary for you to tell employers how you are and what you have learned. Do not focus so much on your academic skills as the un-skilled job is more about telling who you are as a person. Of course, if you are looking for a job as a bartender it is relevant to show from a previous job as a cleaner that you are used to working with manual and physical work as well.
Furthermore, it is important that the employer can get a clear overview of your general plans, including your expected study period (expected graduation from AAU), your language skills (status on Danish courses, and whether you are able to read, write, speak and understand some Danish), your general availability for the job (amount of hours you can work monthly), etc. This information can be included in your profile text or in the general information on your cv.
Additionally, it is also relevant to briefly mention a little bit about yourself. Even though the job you are applying for may not be your dream job, it shows character that you describe your personal competencies such as what do you do in your spare time – do you practise sports and make arts – and why.
Make sure that your cv stands out by creating a professional layout with a clear structure. Create your own template or use AAU Career’s to make your cv and profile text coherent and clear.
Hand-deliver your cv unless the company specifically ask you to e-mail it or register it through their website. Make a list from home, and spend the time to deliver your applications in person at the different companies, restaurants, etc. Present yourself to the manager if possible, and express your eagerness to get a job.
Be sure to note which companies seem interested and whether they mentioned anything about specific deadlines for when they will get back to you. Some companies may say that they do not have any openings at the moment, but that you should try again at a later point. Follow up in the weeks and months after.
Remember that even though you would like to earn money volunteer work may give you fun and inspirational experience. Volunteer work is highly valued in Denmark.
Student organisations at AAU:
Volunteering at Aalborg Kommune:
Find vonunteer work: