There can be many reasons why people take a break from work in Australia. It can be a new mother deciding to return to work after giving birth, or a person has travelled overseas and then decided to return back home.
It could also be an individual decided to take temporary retirement, or faced redundancy and decided to take some time off to re-group.
Statistics show, around 4% of employees have taken career breaks of 6 months or longer from the Australia job market.
This is aside from the 73% of women who took time off to raise a family, and 47% of males spent time away from their careers because of personal reasons.
Whatever the reason an individual has decided to take a break, there might be a time when they decide it is time to get back on the career ladder.
With the speed of the modern workplace, many things change, and if finding a job wasn’t hard enough, it can unnerve you even more after you have taken an extended break.
There are many reasons why it is harder to getting back into the workforce, and these can include feeling anxious or worrying the skills you used to have are now a little rusty.
Assessing Your Situation
There is no question that when a lot of people return back to work, they jump into the first job they can find. This can lead to job hopping because you are unhappy in the position, or it can make you uneasy and you think the problems lie within yourself.
This can give your self-confidence a real knock, and any job satisfaction can be missed. Before committing, you should take a step back, remember what position you enjoyed or what was right for you before your break, and might not be right for you now.
After you have assessed your situation, you will more than likely see that re-entering the workforce is all about preparation.
This includes areas for yourself, and also the areas where you need to approach companies who have posted jobs you are interested in.
Networking and Making it Work for You
When you begin looking to get back into the workforce, you should never underestimate all the contacts you made before your career break.
This is the time to reach out to family, friends and old work colleagues. Tell them you are back on the job market and are looking for a new position.
In some instances, a person you know might be able to help you find that perfect position or at least point you in the right direction.
At the same time, you can use this opportunity to update your potential references ready for your resume.
Updating the All Important Resume
It is a common myth that having a gap in your resume will hurt your chances of landing another job. Instead, you should look at this as something which will set you apart from other candidates.
The last thing you should do on your resume is to hide the fact you have taken a break. There can be plenty of benefits which stem from this, and they can in some instances make you more hireable than others who are looking for a new position.
There will be new skills you have learned while you have been away from work, so, all you need to do is explain how these relate to the positions you are replying for.
You might have taken evening classes or undertaken some not for profit jobs helping the community, or even skills you have taught yourself during your break.
Preparing Yourself for Your Interview
Supporting your previous employment history is crucial in an interview, but supporting the reasons you took time away from work can be even harder, and it will raise more questions.
When you can show this time off work was best utilised, and not just lounging around, then a prospective employer can see you are the sort of person who likes to keep busy, and takes advantage of free time.
One of the questions you are likely to be asked is “Why are you getting back into the Australian workforce?” This you should be able to explain while at the same time showing, and emphasising the focus, drive and passion you have for the position.
Career Return Programs
If you find you don’t feel totally confident in job hunting on your own, you can check if there are any career returner programs in your area. There are a few of these around and can last a few months and will help re-build skills and overall confidence.
A part of this can also be career counselling, this will help pinpoint areas which you are concerned about, or where you think you have weaknesses.
A supporting shoulder can go a long way to boosting your overall confidence and show you that you have nothing to worry about.
Your Chosen Career Path
Everyone has their own individual career path, and in some cases, it takes a very drastic turn away from what people first envisioned. Taking a break is nothing to shy away from, and it is more common than you might realise.
If you feel apprehensive about re-entering the job market, you can find all the support you need, and also enlist help when it comes to writing your resume.
Professionals spend most of their time helping people just like you to fill in those resume gaps with information which is justified, and something you can be confident about sharing.
All of the above job hunting tips can only take you so far, but if you follow them, you will see there is nothing you can’t handle in your quest of re-landing a new career.
The job market is highly competitive, and there are more applicants for positions than there used to be.
This though doesn’t stop you from being a good candidate for the position, and you deserve the right as much as the next candidate for being hired.