From education to employment

Dad finds work after CV goes viral

When James Pemblington won a competition to have his CV posted on the back of a truck, little did he know his face would appear across the world. The competition, run in conjunction with online job board Zoek, aimed at helping someone made redundant because of Covid-19 get more exposure in their job search. It is fair to say the competition was a huge success. James’s story received national and international exposure and he received a job offer less than a week later.

Calling the experience “a bit bonkers”, James said he was shocked by the attention he received. He said, “I was hoping the competition would give me some good regional exposure and maybe even a little national coverage. I never expected it to go international like it did.” James’s story was picked up by major news networks across the world, including popular US talk show ‘The Daily Show’. James had created a website to showcase his skills and experience. Used to seeing visits from people living locally, he was shocked to see hits from afar field as China, the US and Mexico.

Welcome break from doom and gloom

Now working as a Covid-19 testing site deputy for Serco, James remains positive despite the role only being temporary. He said, “The competition was great, and of course, helped me find a job I enjoy with a good company. The positive energy the whole experience provided me was important. I think a lot of people could relate to looking for work suddenly during the pandemic. It provided me, and possibly others, a positive distraction to the doom and gloom of everything else.”

Diana Campbell, managing director of Zoek, the online job board behind the competition, said, “The idea was to create some positivity for people who had lost their jobs due to the pandemic, and of course help someone find a job. The results were amazing. James found work quickly and his story really appeared to resonate with people around the world. We are very proud to have helped James find work.”

Key to success? Keep applying for jobs

George McFarlane, head of operations for Serco Testing Services, says, “James is a likeable and popular member of the team who has settled in well. He is dedicated and shown the qualities that rightfully earned him praise for his initiative when trying to find a job during the pandemic. James’ positivity touched the hearts of many around the world and he is a credit to himself. We are delighted to have him onboard and playing an important part in running the Covid-19 testing centres that Serco manages on behalf of DHSC.”  

Speaking of the experience, James believes he has learnt an important lesson, one he has been sharing with students and job seekers. He said, “I believe the importance of positive thinking when looking for work is massive. I had many, many job rejections before I was successful. I volunteered as a motivational speaker because I want to tell people that job rejections are not personal, it just means you are not right for that role. I tell everyone there is a job out there matching their skills, sometimes you just have to work very hard to find it.”

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