If you're looking for work and don't know where to start, the National Careers Service has information on everything to do with employment and careers.  Use the links below to answer your questions:

  • Help to get a job - Get advice on the different stages of a job hunt, including how to look for jobs, write an effective CV and improve your interview technique
  • Job profiles - Find out what a job involves and if it's right for you
  • Skills health check - Use this assessment to find out what kind of jobs could suit you 
  • Find a course - Look for courses and learning providers

Looking for jobs

There are lots of places to look for jobs online, and you could start by registering with Universal Jobmatch.

If you're not confident in using the internet to search for work, contact The Learning Place to find out about computer skills courses.

If you don't have internet access at home, find out when computers are available at your local library or community centre.  Or use your own laptop, tablet  or smartphone in any of the My City WiFi free internet hotspots around the city.

Help for council and housing association tenants

If you rent your homes from Portsmouth City Council, your local Area Housing Office can give you help and support to get back in to work. Speak to your Housing Officer to find out what help is available.

Some of the bigger Housing Associations in the city also give help and support to tenants who want to find work. Contact your landlord's customer services team to find out what is available.


Apprenticeships mean you can earn a wage while you learn and gain practical skills on the job.


Volunteering is a great way to meet new people and develop your skills to help you find the right job.

Build your skills

Whether you want to gain a qualification, learn something new, or strengthen your skills, learning opportunities are available. Local providers include:

Or you can search for courses online from the National Careers Service.

If you'd like to be more confident with numbers, and you like learning online, take the national numeracy challenge and learn the maths you need for your everyday life.

Working for Portsmouth City Council

Look online for jobs and apprenticeships at Portsmouth City Council, including through our temporary recruitment agency.

Help if you are aged 16-24 and not in work, education or training

16 -24 and not in work, education or training? If you need support with finding work, CVs, application forms, apprenticeships, college courses or training, come to one of our drop-ins where an adviser can help you.

Email whatnext@portsmouthcc.gov.uk more information. Drop-ins are at the following venues:

Monday, 12-2pm

BYAC (Buckland Youth Activities Centre), Charles Dickens Centre, Lake Road, Buckland, PO1 4DY

Tuesday 12 -2pm

Hillside Youth Club, Cheltenham Road, Paulsgrove, PO6 3PY

Wednesday 12 -2pm

Brook Club, Somerstown Central Hub, Rivers Street, Portsmouth, PO5 4EY

Financial support while you look for work 

While you are looking for work, you can apply for Jobseeker's Allowance or Universal Credit.  To check which of these you can claim, read the information on who must claim Universal Credit.

You should make your claim as soon as possible, because you may have to wait several weeks after you submit your claim for your first benefit payment to be made.  Even if you think you might get back into work quickly, you can still make a claim, and then cancel it once you start work again.

Travelling to work

Visit My Journey for information on travel in and around the Portsmouth area, to help you save time and money getting to work.

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