During the pandemic, many people have consider changing to a new sector or profession. A recent survey by Randstad UK found that 69% of employees were planning on making a move to a new role in the next few months. Previous research by the Association of Accounting Technicians in 2020 found that 20% of workers were exploring the idea of a career change which seems to suggest the numbers are rising.
Career paths are no where near as stable as they were in the past – and while the loss of job stability in many sectors can cause anxiety it can also free us from thinking that our careers need to follow a single narrative.
You may want a change in career to make more money, to pursue a passion, align better with your lifestyle or to explore a new goal.
Within agencies many people move between roles and specialisms. With a fast paced industry it is vital to be up to date with changing technology, design trends or marketing methods.
What to consider if you are thinking about changing roles
But what should we consider before deciding to change career?
It’s natural to feel nervous about the prospect – but the first thing to do is to establish what you want to do and map out what you would need to do to achieve your goals.
Some professions require qualifications – perhaps a degree or vocational training, whereas others you can learn on the job. Some sectors are highly competitive, particularly in the creative sectors. Building a portfolio of work and seeking unpaid work experience before you decide to leave your current employment can therefore help you to prepare yourself as a great candidate.
Use what you have – changing careers made easy
Once you have established what you would like to aim for and have an idea on the next steps, don’t forget to seek advice and support.
Most of us now have active social media accounts, whether on Facebook or LinkedIn. Don’t be afraid to reach out both on and offline to your networks. Explain to trusted friends and family your intentions and speak to those you can who already work in your chosen sector. Their advice could be invaluable and they may even be able to support you with mentoring, work experience or guidance on how to stand out.
Take advantage of opportunities to network and meet new people. Using your network can make all the difference when you are looking to make a change.
Within the agencies world there are many transferable skills that you can use when moving around job roles. A great way to identify your skills and how you can maximize these is to speak with a friend or mentor to break down what your current role involved and what your skill set is.
Resilience is very important. Changing careers can take time, and you the first option you explore may not work out. For example, you may not secure a place on a popular training course the first time you apply. Don’t be discouraged and keep positive.
Remember to keep your expectations realistic and to regularly remind yourself of your motivation for the change. Setting small goals along the way, such as applying for a position or engaging with a helpful contact can keep you feeling like you are making progress.