Almost three-quarters of a million people have lost their jobs since coronavirus lockdown began and with furlough schemes soon coming to an end, a further 139,000 jobs are are risk due to planned redundancies.
With uncertainty around many job sectors, it's no surprise that many workers across the country are considering changing careers - or being forced to - but a change of career can be daunting, so where do you start?Finding a new career
Hannah Salton a career coach and consultant recommends that the first thing people do is reflect on what they've enjoyed from previous roles."Think about the type of activities they've enjoyed doing," she recommends.
"Think about whether they prefer to work individually or as part of a team, and really try and break down what are your fundamental requirements from your next career?" Ms Salton says it's important to understand what is a deal breaker and what is something that you can’t negotiate, such as location or salary.Identifying transferable skillsMs Salton suggests using previous job descriptions or online searches to identify the key skills involved in a typical career that you have done to help articulate what skills you may have built up."There are a lot of key skills that are quite general, such as team working or communication, but what can be helpful is if you really think about delving into the specifics," she says.
Ms Salton recommends breaking down these key skills into smaller categories. "If you developed communication as part of your career, what type of communication have you developed the most?
"It may be written communication, it may be verbal communication and then you can start to think about what other careers or jobs are out there that may require a similar skillset."Networking
"Having a good CV and a good LinkedIn profile these days is not enough," Ms Salton says.
She adds that to improve your chances on the jobs market, job seekers must also focus on networking. "A lot of people have this quite old fashioned view of networking that it's all about going to big events, but I really found that nowadays a lot of networking is much more around connection and conversation."Ms Salton suggests reconnecting with old colleagues or family and friends to asking for introductions to "friends of friends or contacts of contacts to try and build up a network that way".'Bridge jobs’
However, for those who want to stay on their career path, but know it may not be viable for the next year or so, Salton recommends searching for a temporary job change, AKA a 'bridge job'. "A bridge job can be really useful because it can provide you the time and mental space to really work out what it is you want to do, they can also be very useful in terms of keeping you in the workforce and maintaining your skillset," she says.How to find a 'bridge job'?
Finding a bridge jobs is usually easier where you have a little bit of experience in a similar field, but transferable skills are key, Ms Salton says."If you have worked in the aviation industry as an air hostess, there are a lot of transferable skills, like customer service, time management and communication, all which are useful in other settings," she explains.Whilst the amount of open vacancies for job seekers has fallen as the pandemic has forced many businesses to hit pause, new job opportunities will arise and many employers have said they will be looking out for transferable skills and not just experience of an industry.