Did you have a successful career that you decided to take a break from in order to go back to school to pursue a new career that interested you more? You are not alone. More than 58 percent of South College students are non-traditional, with many pursuing a different career. Today, we’ll break down seven tips to help you re-enter the workforce in your new career.
Get to know key players in your new industry
Just as you knew of thought leaders in your previous industry, make sure that you become familiar with those in your new field. Before you start applying for jobs, do some research on leading companies, their practices and current industry trends.
Read job descriptions in your new field
As you prepare for the job search in a new career, you will need to do some research on the types of positions available in that field and which job descriptions interest you most. Your job options may be degree specific or you may have a wide range of industry options. It will be vital to your job search and interview process that you understand what will be expected of you in a position. Plus, there’s more to a job description than meets the eye. Learn to read between the lines and evaluate the descriptions strategically.
Consider an entry-level position
Not that you are starting over from scratch, but do not rule out an entry-level position as a method for getting your foot in the door in a new industry. There are many benefits to these resume-building jobs. Entry-level jobs and internships may even be something you can do while you finish up your degree. Trust us, internships can be impactful in shaping your career.
Network, network and then network some more
According to the U.S. News and World Report, 70 percent of jobs are found through networking, which could prove vital to securing your dream job. Your educational institution may have affiliations with the pre-professional organizations related to your new field. This is a great way to network with professionals that are influential in your new job market.
Explain resume gaps with confidence
Employers will want to know about any significant (more than six months) gaps in your work experience. Do not be embarrassed or sheepish about the gaps in your resume. Instead think about the ways you grew through travel, education or life experience and highlight them with confidence.
Remodel social media
Do not forget that your social media may still reflect your past professional profile. On sites like Facebook and LinkedIn, make sure that your current positions, experience and job status are as up to date as possible. Another way to focus your social media toward your new career is to ‘like’or ‘follow’ the industry leaders you have discovered. This will show employers who may look at your profile that you are zoned in on leading industry trends.
Don’t dwell on the fact of re-entry
In your interview prep, brainstorm ways to avoid dwelling on the fact that you’re re-entering the workforce. This is not what the employer will be focused on during your interview—so you should not focus on it either. It may seem like a big deal to you, but if you learn to downplay this, it will benefit you in the eyes of the employer.
The fact that you are re-entering the workforce in a new career probably seems like a much bigger deal to you than it will to employers. Be confident in your abilities and never let the fear of starting over keep you from pursuing a more suitable career field. Earning a degree from South College will supply you with the education and skills you need to succeed in a new field that you love. Contact us today to get started on your new career path!