After a career break, getting back to the job market is not easy. Lack of employment opportunities, weird questions that get asked during interviews about why you took a break? And the motivation required to move your butt to leave your old routine behind. Maybe that’s why 900 Million people have stopped searching for jobs.
I am not promising that this blog will get you one, but if you are among those people who have not given up on your job search then the engineering cv writing service promises that by the end of this blog you will have a good idea about what to do next. Because in today’s blog we are going to see.
1) 7 steps to get a job if you were on a career break. These steps will help you even if you are a fresher looking for your first job.
2) I will share with you some real-life examples of people I’ve known who had unemployment gaps in their careers and the measures they took to land a job offer.
3) I will also share with you my experience of getting back to work, after a career break.
4) And towards the end I’ll give you a Bonus Tip which can be your answer to the problem of not getting any interview calls. So without further ado, let’s begin. The 7 steps to finding a job after a career break are:
Step #1: Create A Support Network
There is a reason why you took a break.. Perhaps it was taking care of a child, or parents, a medical emergency, or moving to a new location. All of these are challenging situations and you need 2 kinds of support networks, ‘personal’ and ‘professional’ to help you get back on track. Now, how to create a ‘personal’ support network? One golden word of advice Delegate.
Prasanna says that taking care of 2 active kids, one crawling and the other running, took her longer than expected to get back to the workforce. So hire somebody or trust your spouse with your child for a couple of hours. I know it’s easier said than done, but sweetheart college is many years away. In my experience, building a ‘personal’ support network is the most difficult step but also the most crucial. Coming to the ‘Professional’ support network. I will show you how to build a strong ‘Professional’ network that will help you get a job in the 6th step.
Step 2: Re-Evaluate The Beauty Of Life Is That We All Change
Maybe earlier, the urban life of Mumbai or New York was calling you but now you want to buy a villa and work from home. Instead of writing code, now you have this sudden urge to talk to more people.. May be it’s the pandemic, time or family that has changed your priorities.
Sravya had a 2-year career gap after she moved to Germany. She realized that at this new location, she did not want to do the same job as earlier. So she re-evaluated her career choices and even applied to entry-level jobs in spite of having 3 years of experience. She says that this was necessary to reach the next chapter of her career. So to pivot your career, here are few things you can do..
#1: Figure out what jobs have more demand and the least supply. These roles can lead to interview calls because companies have a tough time finding good talent already. So a career gap might not matter at all. You can check websites like LinkedIn, Monster or general job-related news to find out the hottest jobs in the market.
#2: Make a list of your current skills and see where there is an overlap with what the market currently needs. To give you an example, Vineeta was into private equity but after a career break of 8 years, she noticed that the number of angel investor funds had increased and were hiring especially with the working hours that she preferred. So, instead of going back to her old job, she experimented with the current roles and is now the VP of Investments at SucSEED Ventures.
#3, talk to people. While re-evaluating her career choices, Sravya said that she had spoken to Business Analysts, Developers, Testers and learnt that these roles are not for her. This led her to pick up roles, which she said and I quote ‘hated the least’. Sometimes, it’s not about finding the job you love but eliminating jobs that you are sure you don’t want to do. Here is a secret.
You don’t have to work for the same job that you studied for. You can re-evaluate your career choices, Young Padawan! But wait Taskeen, I am an engineer. But now I want to pivot into Digital Marketing and work for my favourite Influencer! What do I do now? That’s a brilliant question. Which is why we have step#3 Upskill Yourself.
Step 3 Upskill Yourself
Shreya who was a lead consultant in an I.T firm and had a career break of 6 years, noticed that a few certifications were mentioned in the entry-level criteria for the jobs she was interested in. So, she became scrum-certified and got a Product Management certificate which she says was important in passing the screening round and getting an interview call.
After you have re-evaluated your career choices, the next logical step is to fill the missing gaps. And one of the ways to do that is through certifications. It is really for you to decide, what you want a certification to do for you. Is it meeting the eligibility criteria for a job, like Shreya did or is it to upskill yourself for the right job.
Some people also use certifications to get hands-on experience through projects and assignments to figure out if they’d like a job or not. It’s like dating before getting into a marriage. So, if you are looking to upskill yourself or try out a job role, then one of the places to check out is the Google Career Certificates.
I don’t think there would have been a more appropriate sponsor for this blog than them. They offer certifications across high-demand fields like Digital Marketing and E-Commerce, Project Management, UX Design, Data Analytics, I.T Support and I.T Automation. These certificates have been made my Google Experts, are 100% online and can be completed at your own pace, and no prior experience is needed to apply for them. If you want to know more about them, then check out the link in the description where you can also watch blogs and examples of people who became job-ready with Google Career Certificates.
Step #4: Build Something Of Your Own. Relax
It is not as scary as it sounds. While you are learning through your certifications, it doesn’t hurt to keep a log of the projects you have undertaken. Building something of your own is like taking up the fun practicals after a boring theory class. And here is how you can go about it.. #1: Create a Work Portfolio. If you are a programmer, use GitHub, If you are a designer, create a Dribble or a Behance profile, or if you are a writer, create your own WordPress blog.
Profile Will Give Authenticity
Your profile will give your employers a sneak peak into what you are capable of. Prince, while pursuing his engineering used to design everything for his university from college fests to brochures. He had a Behance profile, but mostly a simple Google Drive folder of a portfolio titled, ‘Work Samples’. He says that the stronger his portfolio got, the easier it became to get new work as a graphic designer. And #2: Until you find a full-time job, freelance.
You can try platforms like Fiverr or Upwork. Karan, who is also a computer science engineer, just to experiment had applied to a freelance blog editing job posted by us, The Urban Fight on Internshala. It has been 2 years since and turns out, it was a match made in heaven. Think of your portfolio as a plant. Feed it a little every day and it’ll grow up to be something marvelous.
Step #5: Create A Smashing Profile
To re-quote MegaMind, the difference between Hired and Not Hired, can be.. Presentation. And here is how you can make the marvelous work you have been doing in the first 4 steps, presentable.
#1: Create a Resume I know it’s a pain in the arse, but here is a quick blog about how you can just fill in free templates online to create a neat resume for yourself.
#2: Update your LinkedIn. Here is something exciting like LinkedIn now allows you to add a ‘Career Break’ section to your profile. Under ‘Experience’, click on ‘Add Career Break’ and select a type be it parenting, layoffs or even personal goal pursuit.
Step #6: Get Your Foot In The Door I Cannot Stress Enough
How important networking is when it comes to getting an interview call. So here are a few things you can do, that’ll help you get your foot in the door.
#1: Few companies like Google, Deloitte, Accenture offer ‘Return to Work’ programs. Prasanna says that after a 4 year career break, she was finding it hard to get an interview call. But it was the ‘Second Innings’ program by Deloitte that helped her get connected with folks in the industry who were looking to hire.
Also Read: TikTok Monetization – Here’s How You Can Make Big Money
#2: Apply everywhere! Sravya says that most companies won’t reply, but she took chances with the ones that did. She said and I quote… ‘It is better than doing nothing. At best, you will find success and at worst, you will get experience.’ After 3 such jobs, she landed the job role she likes. And finally, tell everyone! Vineeta says that in the lift of her apartment building, she was just having a random conversation with someone about searching for jobs. It later turned into an interview and a job offer. Turns out, that random someone in the lift, is the founder of the company she is currently working for. So, let everyone know that you want a job and here are 3 things you can do.
#3: On your LinkedIn, click on ‘open to’ and select, ‘finding a new job’.
#4: Reach out to your Alumni network, your friends, and family and let everybody know of your interests and your qualifications. #3: In fact, comment below and let all of us know what kind of a job you are looking for. Who knows, you might find your next employer here! For example.. This way, we will also know what career blogs to make for you next.
Step #7: Keep Applying
The one thing that all of these professionals had in common was the numerous jobs they had applied to. A friend of mine who recently joined an MNC at a senior position and wants to remain anonymous said that most companies didn’t even reply back and for the one’s that did, discussions about how she would manage both being a mother and a working professional were prominent.
Society is not kind to new mothers. I remember when I was expecting and working, there were comments about me putting on more weight along with advice on diet and exercise. We laugh it off, and frankly feel sorry for those people because they are riddled with their own insecurities. But for some, it can be soul-crushing.
You Want To Get A Job
Comments about weight, about why you want to get a job, isn’t your husband earning enough? Interviews are also one such place where such personal questions can creep in. But frankly, there is nothing to be embarrassed about. All we can do is be prepared. Just like you prepare for ‘Tell me about yourself, or ‘What are your Strengths and Weaknesses?’
Among the noise, if you are looking for a friendly voice to help you prepare for your next interview then check out my blog on ‘Last-Minute Interview Preparation tips’. I’ve left its link in the description. Before we move on to the Bonus Tip, don’t forget to ‘subscribe’ and hit that bell icon, because come on.. I know you like me!! And also because we make Career and Finance blogs, regularly.
It’s weird how we’ve been told since childhood, that to finish this exam, your life will be set, get this job, get married. And when you finally decide to take some time out for yourself, it’s considered a ‘gap’ in your career, a blot that needs justification. But the women and men we’ve discussed in this blog today, give me hope that a career gap, doesn’t need to be a career end, especially if you are a mother.
Borrow the same patience and resilience you use while you are feeding your child who refuses to eat, 5 times a day. So today’s bonus tip is this Be shamelessly resilient. Even if companies don’t reply back, or if the interview questions make you uncomfortable. One day or the other, you will reach that job that’s custom-made just for you.