Working in counselling and advice

Services provide advice to help people deal with issues and events in their lives, such as debt, benefits, legal problems or careers.

People with serious emotional problems may need counselling, for example to cope with bereavement, abuse or relationships breaking down. Work as an adviser can be face to face with your clients or by phone, sometimes even by email or webchat. Counselling is usually face to face. Many advisers do voluntary work. This can be a good way to gain experience and progress in your career. You don’t always have to have experience of the issue you are advising or counselling on. For example, most drug counsellors have not been users.

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Approximate pay levels

Figures supplied as a guide only

At all levels, some job opportunities are for voluntary posts, but these will often be part-time.

Pay level graph

Future careers

There is likely to continue to be a high demand for debt, money and benefits advice as people struggle to make ends meet. Mediation is a popular alternative to expensive legal advice and court cases. Good careers advisers are always in demand to help people of all ages make decisions about their future. Financial and some other services are heavily regulated so there is demand for people to work in the organisations which regulate advisers in these areas. There are likely to be fewer paid posts and more opportunities for volunteers in the future.

Things to consider

Things you may need to know:

  • When people come for advice, they are telling you private and personal information. You have to be prepared to keep it confidential.
  • You need a DBS check for many counselling and advice jobs.
  • You have to be over 18 for some jobs.

Useful links

Pearson is not responsible for content on external websites.

Citizens Advice Bureau

Money Advice Service

Volunteering England