This trip wasn’t purely for pleasure. I did want to do a bit of exploring but my main reason for going to Edinburgh was to go there on spec for a few days and see what the possibility was of finding work. I’ve been looking for a long time for an enjoyable full time job. My passion is traveling and writing about it. But finding travel writing work and making a living from it, can take a long time. In the meantime, bills need to be paid.
I’ve had some enjoyable office jobs here in Amsterdam but in most cases, due to reorganisation, the work in our departments was outsourced and we were made redundant. So my search for an enjoyable job is still ongoing. What’s an enjoyable job, you may ask? Well, for me, my ideal job would be working in a tourist office. Why?
Because working in a tourism environment, giving out information to tourists, booking accommodation, tours, concert/event tickets, learning about the marketing side of tourism, having face to face contact with customers from all over the world, is something I’m sure I’d love. I love working with people, especially on a face to face basis. I can put my 16 years of traveling experience, my 23 years hospitality experience and several years of office customer service experience into a tourism job like this and I’m sure I’d thrive in it. Combine that with my good Dutch and French, great organisational skills and love/passion for traveling, among other things and for me, you have the ingredients of a perfect job, working in a tourist office.
If I can’t find something suitable here in Amsterdam then I have to think of other alternatives. I think I’d be happy to move somewhere where English is the first language. New Zealand is my first choice. But I’ve just come back from there recently, so the pennies have to be saved, in order to be able to go back. What options do I have in Europe?
Ireland’s unemployment rate is very high and it’s very expensive to live there. Scotland, England and Wales are the other places that spring to mind. I’ve always really liked Scotland but the decision was: do I go to Edinburgh or Glasgow? I’ve been to Edinburgh a few times before and liked it. I applied for several jobs with Visit Scotland, the national tourism organisation there but had no luck.
I have eight years customer service/administration experience working for various international companies in Amsterdam and twenty three years hospitality experience working on a face to face basis with customers, in bars, hotels and restaurants all over Europe. I thought I might see what the opportunities might be like with finding work in administration, as I wanted a change in direction from the hospitality work. So I started looking at recruitment agencies in Edinburgh.
There were two recruitment agencies that seemed to be suitable for what I was looking for: Office Angels and Search Recruitment. So I managed to make an appointment with one of the consultants in Office Angels before I left Amsterdam. They asked me to fill in about six different forms and do spelling, numerical, data entry, Microsoft Word and typing tests online before I went for the appointment.
I did all of these tests, sent them off and then booked my flight and accommodation. I wanted to be within a short walking distance from the city centre and also wanted to stay in a hostel, so I could cook for myself. I was counting the pennies. Smart at iQ, near the Haymarket seemed to be a good option for me. Find out in the other posts what sort of experience I had with them!