Career breaks occur for a variety of reasons; you may have decided to remain at home to raise children, for example, or you may have wanted to travel and see the world for a period of time, from a few weeks to a few years. You might have been sick and unable to work, or you could have been looking for – and studying for — a completely new profession.
Whatever the cause, getting back into the workforce after a professional hiatus can be difficult. There is a lot to think about, not least of which is how you feel about returning to work after time away, as well as all the things you might have missed while you were gone.
Going back to work won’t be easy, but it won’t be impossible either. There are many things to consider initially, but if you have them all in mind and are proactive in your search, finding a new job will be a lot simpler. Continue reading to learn how to get started.
Before you start searching for and applying for new jobs, take a step back and assess your present position. This will help you in determining the kind of work that will best suit you; the last thing you want to do is start a new career only to find that it is not a good fit for you. This will be a waste of time and possibly money, and it won’t make you feel any better about finding a new job after taking some time out for whatever reason it was you needed or wanted it.
Consider why you quit working in the first place and use that as a foundation for your comeback. If you were to have children, would you need a job that is flexible around daycare, for example, and maybe provides the opportunity to work from home? Will you need extra assistance in the workplace if it was due to an illness or recuperation from an accident, or will you need part-time employment to begin with? All of this must be carefully thought about since it will influence the jobs for which you can apply.
This is your best opportunity to discover the right job for you, so if you didn’t like what you were doing previously, you should try something new because you now have the chance to. If you liked what you were doing, you could go back to it. The benefit of returning to work in this manner is the freedom it provides. You can do the following:
• Continue to work in the same job as you did previously.
• Perform the same function in a different industry.
• Take up a new job in the same sector.
• Take on a totally new job in a completely new sector.
There are a lot of options, so take advantage of the opportunity to pursue something you are passionate about.
Learn New Skills
When you plan to return to work after a hiatus, you should be honest about your abilities and experience. You may have worked in your field for a number of years before stepping back, yet during your absence, a variety of developments may have occurred that you just don’t have the qualifications for or even much knowledge – if any – about.
If you have been gone for a long period (or even a very short time in certain fields, such as computing, which is always changing), it is worthwhile to take some kind of refresher course. Local schools, colleges, and adult education centers often offer classes like this, and if you can’t find anything there, reach out via networking – either in person or on social media – to see what other alternatives are available to you.
You could think about the qualifications you already have and add to them, such as taking a masters in education. A new qualification for your resume won’t only help you obtain an interview but will also boost your confidence.
Update Your Resume
When it comes to getting a new job after years away from your sector, your resume will be crucial. It is likely to be extremely out of date if you have one, so you will need to spend some time working on it to make it exactly right.
There will be a void in your resume’s career section. A brief paragraph explaining why you were on a professional sabbatical, together with the dates, should be enough to fill in the blanks. Don’t simply leave it empty, though, since you’ll have to explain it anyhow during an interview.
Of course, if you accomplished anything important during your time off, include it – for example, if you did any ad hoc work for your child’s school or a neighbor. However, don’t include items that aren’t important; otherwise, it will seem as if you’re filling in the blanks just to make your resume look a little more full.
Returning to work after a long absence may be intimidating, and you might not even know where to begin searching. Seeking guidance and advice will be beneficial in this situation; learn as much as you can from recruiters, ex-colleagues, or others who operate in the sector you want to work in or return to. You can also attend seminars and study business publications.
Get a solid sense of what’s going on and what’s expected of people who work in the industry you’re interested in. This will not only make you feel more prepared, but you will also have a better grasp of where you are going and will be more confident during an interview.
The aim of returning to work is a fine one, but it is also very broad, which may be troublesome. It means you don’t have any details to work with, and you also leave too many issues unanswered, making the whole scenario much more difficult to deal with.
Instead, set smaller, more manageable objectives. Begin with your credentials, then go on to your resume. Then consider researching your sector. Next, post your resume on job search websites and begin looking for work. Take your time and be patient; it may seem like you’re not getting anywhere, which can be irritating, but if you’re patient and work methodically, you’ll get there in the end, and you’ll know that wherever you are, that’s where you want to be.