“Life is what happens to us while we are making other plans.” This quote, often misattributed to John Lennon, resonates especially with employees who have been forced to exit the workforce. Life can be messy, and taking an extended absence from work is just one of the ways life sometimes “happens.”
If you’ve been out of work for a while, for whatever reason, and are now considering re-entering the workforce, the road ahead can seem daunting. The good news is you’re not alone. Many others have taken this same journey.
We spoke with Aerotek contractors who’ve successfully gotten back to work after some time away. They had valuable insights for anybody looking to get back into the swing of things.
Believe you can do it
Keep your spirits up, trust in your experience, and know what makes you an asset to any organisation – your unique combination of skills and personality. Be honest about your capabilities, and be ready to grow into a new role.
Be ready to answer the “big question”
Hiring managers will ask about time away from work. Of chief importance is framing your experiences in a way that shows how they make you a better employee than most.
Remember that your time away, whether due to family hardships or not, makes you a more loyal, grateful, and motivated employee than most candidates, and that attitude can have a positive impact on your co-workers.
Catch up on your skills
We all know the pace of technology can be dizzying, and impacts a wide range of industries and roles. While looking to re-enter the workforce, take the time to catch up on any recent updates in software that occurred between your last position and now. It can be difficult at first, but there are resources out there — many of them free — that can help you get up to speed.
A big part of the battle is maintaining a can-do mindset. Give yourself the time you need, and don’t forget, practice makes perfect.
Find an ally
The process of getting back to work can seem intimidating if you think about the whole journey at once. But you don’t have to go it alone. Find somebody who can help you break that process down into manageable tasks, keep you motivated and pitch in with some of the legwork. Contract employment can be a great way to start.
Could you use a little help along your journey?
Talk with an Aerotek recruiter to see how they can work with you. And if you’re looking for a job, visit our job board to find your next great opportunity.