Next Move: Employers will not look at my CV

I am an Indian national with a degree in computer science and engineering. I have 18 months' experience in software development...

I am an Indian national with a degree in computer science and engineering. I have 18 months' experience in software development as an assistant systems engineer at Tata Consultancy Services, a multinational company in India. I gave up my job in August 2002 to come to the UK.

My husband has a long-stay visa and I am on a spouse visa, which means I am entitled to work in this country. I have been applying for jobs but have been told that as I did not have a valid work permit, my CV could not be processed. Would a postgraduate course help?

Keep your job search as broad as possible

Over the past 18 months a lot of people have been made redundant, cannot find another contract or have been out of work since 2001. Consequently, companies can be extremely particular about finding the right people.

It is very important to remove any initial doubts about your work status. You need to make it clear that you are allowed to take up a contract or permanent employment in the UK. Always enclose copies of official documentation with your CV confirming this (a copy of your passport page with authority to work, for example).

I would recommend keeping your search as broad as possible, in terms of the technical skills and geography. Your first role may not be ideal but better opportunities usually become available as you prove yourself.

I do not necessarily think further training or qualifications are the answer, but try to keep your IT skills as current as possible. Should you find companies are looking for different skills, an NVQ would bridge the gap.

Solution by Richard Herring, Reed Technology

The panel: MSB International, Best International, BritishComputer Society, Computer Futures, Computer People, Elan, Reed Technology, Zarak Technology, E-Skills UK

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This was last published in May 2003

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