Advice Worker

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    Advice workers provide impartial and confidential information, advice, and guidance to individuals about a variety of social, financial, legal and employment problems. Advice work could suit you if you have great interpersonal skills, can relate to people from different backgrounds, and are resourceful when helping others reach solutions to problems.

     

    Types of Advice Workers

    • debt;
    • employment;
    • housing;
    • welfare and education.

     

    Duties

    • providing information to clients in person, on the phone and by email;
    • interviewing clients;
    • diagnosing problems, researching, interpreting and explaining legislation, official documents or the content of letters to clients;
    • considering options and identifying possible courses of action;
    • supporting clients to decide on the best course of action based on the information available;
    • producing information for publications, leaflets and web pages;
    • promoting the services on offer and distributing publicity materials;
    • mediating on a client’s behalf, for example, by writing letters, making phone calls or attending meetings;
    • referring clients to other sources of help, for example solicitors, social workers or special case workers, who may represent the client in court or at tribunals;
    • liaising with other internal departments and external organisations;
    • keeping up to date with appropriate legislation and policies;
    • writing reports and compiling statistics on cases covered and services provided;
    • providing training or talks to internal staff or external organisations;
    • setting up support groups;
    • ensuring impartiality and confidentiality when dealing with clients;
    • maintaining confidential case records and administrative systems.

     

    Employers of Advice Workers

     

    • Universities and other institutions
    • Voluntary and charitable organizations
    • Health Institutions

     

    Qualifications

     

    Depending on the nature of the advice provided, the following subjects may be helpful:

    • business and/or finance;
    • community studies/cultural studies/youth studies;
    • education;
    • law;
    • politics;
    • psychology;
    • social administration/social policy/social work;
    • sociology.

     

    Skills

    • interpersonal, communication and IT skills;
    • the ability to relate to people from different backgrounds;
    • a caring, sensitive and non-judgemental manner;
    • a flexible approach to work;
    • the ability to work on your own initiative as well as part of a team;
    • resourcefulness, problem-solving skills and good attention to detail;
    • the ability to cope with stress and emotionally charged issues;
    • strong written skills suitable for writing letters on a client’s behalf and making good case records;
    • numeracy skills suitable for working out benefit entitlements and other financial matters;
    • tact and diplomacy to deal with sensitive and confidential information;
    • the ability to liaise with other professionals and organisations;
    • good awareness of equality and diversity issues.

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