Are you finding that your current career isn’t everything you wanted, but you’re worried that you don’t have the relevant experience for your dream job?
Here are six ways that you can impress your prospective employer and excel in your new profession!
1. Do a job search to find out what your new industry wants from you
If you know that you’re looking at a career switch, have a look at what your new career path will require of you. A good place to do this is to have a squiz at a job description of a position you’d like to enter into. For example, if you’re looking at becoming a teacher’s aide, you know that you must have a working with children check.
It is also a bonus to have knowledge of intellectual disabilities and learning difficulties in children is always, as the children you may be working with will benefit from this understanding.
Find out what the ideal candidate looks like, and try and craft your resume to reflect this. This makes finding a job much easier, because although you may not have the work experience, you have the other theoretical knowledge needed, meaning that potential employers are not going to have to train you in those areas, which will save them a whole lot of time and money.
Click here for some more ways to get your foot in the door at a new company.
2. Make a list of your transferable skills
There are many skills that you may have learnt in previous jobs or opportunities that could be relevant in your new job. Something like customer service is always valued, because it implies that you’ve got experience dealing with difficult or unhappy people, and know how to communicate effectively with them. There are many skills learnt on the job that can be transferable, that you may not have even thought of. If you ran the social media pages in your previous marketing job, that may also be useful for the real estate company you’re hoping to work for, as they might not have anyone who knows how to use social media like LinkedIn. Your social media skills, while not experience in the real estate field, could still help you land your dream job!
3. Go through your work history for relevant experiences
Although you may not have direct experience in the area, if you’re looking at a new career, you have experiences that may still be relatable. For example, you may have started at McDonalds years ago and really enjoyed it. If you’re now looking to move into retail, while it’s not direct work experience, you’ve still had experience working with customers in the past. Your work history may have experiences in them that gives you know how in your new industry.
4. Write up a skill set of your soft skills
Soft skills are personal attributes that will make it easier for you to fit into your new job. You may be open to new experiences, or have high levels of empathy that will set up your job in a new industry and make you appealing to employers. Write these skills out and learn how to talk about them and when you’ve used them in the past. Then, highlight these in your cover letter or in a job interview where appropriate.
5. Undertake a formal qualification or training
Nothing says dedication like training. This is something that you should put at the top of your To-Do list to increase job opportunities and complete in your spare time. If you’re short on time, consider a short course in specific skills. For example, if you would like to get into accounting, a short course in Xero accounting software is perfect. It gives you an advantage over people who have no training, and shows potential employers that not only are you dedicated enough to have undertaken training, you also have knowledge of a relevant specialty skill. You can also do a more generalised short course that will give you more training in the entire area you’re interested in.
For a list of short courses, click here.
6. See if you can gain experience through volunteering
If you’re looking to get into a new field and can’t get any experience through paid work, not even at an entry level, see if you can get experience through volunteering. In Australia we have a multitude of volunteer organisations in every area, from the medical field to finance. Find a cause close to your heart and see if you can set up a volunteer position with them that reflects your changing career.
No matter what age you are or what you’ve been working in, it’s never too late to make a career change, regardless of what experience you have (or haven’t!) got. Consider volunteering in the area or doing a formal qualification for your resume, as well as where in previous jobs you could apply relevant experience to the new career. Also mull over your transferable skills and soft skills for more benefits to the new field that you’re looking at going into.