Re-entering the Workforce After a Long Absence

Whether you stopped working to be a stay-at-home parent, had an injury or illness, or personal tragedy, re-entering the workforce can be difficult and intimidating. There are some things, however, that you can do to make it a little easier. First, carefully evaluate what type of position you are looking for and make sure it is the right fit. The job that you held before your absence may no longer be the right job for you because of changes in technology or personal changes. Second, make sure that your skills are relevant. Is there new technology that you need to learn? Are you up to date on the challenges currently facing those working in your chosen field? Do you need to get re-certified? Taking classes and reading relevant books can be a great way to help you prepare yourself for your future job. Third, talk to others about your job hunt. Networking is a vital part of finding a job. Fourth, be sure to know how to properly apply for a job and write a cover and letter and resume that will get noticed. Do you apply for the job through an online website or email? Is the application, cover letter, and resume reviewed by a computer program looking for key words? Fifth, be honest, open, and confident about your absence. Prepare a brief explanation for the absence from the workplace and practice it before your interview. Do not shy away from it or lie about why you stopped working; employers will see that you are uncomfortable and insincere and may not hire you for that reason. It is also a good idea to make a note about your absence on your resume instead of hoping that it will go unnoticed. Sixth, be open to all job opportunities that are presented to you even if it isn’t the exact job that you were hoping for. It may a stepping stone to your dream job or it may even turn out to be better than the job you thought you wanted. Either way, it is a way for you to break into the workforce and start gaining new experience.

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