Research has concluded that the most effective way to prevent re-offending is to establish the formerly incarcerated in stable employment. Follow our top tips to make sure you grasp this second chance.

Taking the time to assess the job market and find relevant opportunities

Many ex-offenders assume the worst on leaving incarceration and assume that their conviction will bar them from quality employment. What isn’t known is that up to a third of the working population have some sort of criminal conviction.

As such, there are a vast array of jobs and opportunities out there, as long as you are willing and ready to grasp them. The UK job market is moving faster than ever, so if you are willing to be adaptable you are pretty much on the same footing as everyone else.

If you follow our simple steps to applying to your dream jobs, you could have it in no time:

Finding the right employer

One great starting point is to find those employers who are inclusive and do not discriminate. This list is growing every year as an increasing number of the public recognise that it is better for everyone to end the poverty cycle.

For a more detailed explanation of finding inclusive employers, head over to our dedicated career opportunities for ex-offenders page.

Interview tips

First and foremost, do your research. Employers today may see hundreds of applicants for each role. Being on time, wearing the right outfit and with a few well-researched questions could make the difference.

This is because the employer has little to go off in the interview, so looking at little things demonstrates attention to detail, time management and determination to work hard.

As with everyone else at the interview, you will likely be a little nervous. This is fine. All you can do is be yourself, and the more relaxed you are about that, the more confident and competent you will come across. One tip is to have thought about what kind of questions might get asked, so you don’t stumble on the day.

Discussing your conviction

The most important thing in job applications is to be honest. Employers conduct a lot of interviews, so they can spot when someone is lying from a mile away. Not only will this decimate the possibility of getting that job, but they could warn other employers to not hire you.

One way to diminish employment gaps in your CV is to talk about the skills you developed in your time in prison through a functional CV. These include listing your skills and experience, rather than time spent on a job.

A common tip is to highlight examples of adaptability. The world is changing fast, so having a career gap is no longer as important as it used to be. However, your ability to adapt to a new environment is more important than ever. When questioned about your conviction, make sure you have a number of quality examples ready to discuss.