How to get back into work Employment

There are many reasons why people take a career break. It could be due to illness, having children, redundancy, or taking time out to study or travel. Depending on the reasons for your time off work, getting back into the swing of things may feel a little bit intimidating – but it doesn’t have to be. In this guide, we’ll give you some helpful tips on how to get back into work after a career break. 

Take a look at where you are 

Before you start making applications for a job, take a look at where you are right now. This will look different for everyone, but don’t let it overwhelm you. 

All you need to do at the moment is to take stock of your situation, the type of job you want, the hours you would like to work, the location, and the industry you’d like to work with. This will help you to structure your CV, write your cover letter and narrow down your search for suitable jobs. 

Get back into the groove 

If you’ve been out of work for a while, you might be out of routine. While you’re applying for jobs, make a habit of getting back into the groove. Get up early, start a routine, and make searching a part of it. 

It may be a good idea to take a look at your social media profiles and change the privacy settings or give them a cleanup. This is particularly true if you plan to use platforms to network and reach out to potential employers. 

Lack of recent experiences and references could also be a stumbling block, especially if you have been out of work for a while. To overcome this, consider volunteering or trying work placements to get back into a working environment and understand what works for you at the moment. 

Refresh your CV 

Most job applications will require a CV in some shape or form. So, now is the time to get yours up-to-date. If you’ve been out of work for a while, or have gaps in your work history, make sure you explain these on both your CV and cover letter. 

During your time off, you may have gained experience and skills in other areas. For example, through volunteering opportunities, starting your own business, or a hobby. Make sure you include these on your CV and make the most of any and all of your achievements to date. 

For more help with your CV, take a look at the resources: 

Be prepared 

If you land an interview – congratulations! The next step is to prepare as much as possible to make sure you can handle anything and everything the interviewer throws at you. If you feel nervous remember that job interviews are just as much about you assessing the company in terms of fit as it is about them considering you. So relax, and be yourself. 

During your preparation, it may be wise to prepare how you are going to answer questions about your career break. You don’t have to go into too much detail in your explanation. Keep it short and sweet, drawing attention to your achievements, skills, motivation and previous experience. 

Get help with getting back into work from BBO 

If you are a resident in Stafford or South Staffordshire, we can help with your return to work. BBO will work with you to create a personal development plan that focuses on the areas of your life that you would like to improve. This could include employment support, financial advice, health and wellbeing and more. 

For more information, come and see us at one of our drop-in sessions. You don’t have to make an appointment and one of our Advocates will be happy to help you. Alternatively, if you feel you might benefit from chatting to someone on the phone before seeing us face-to-face, then give us a call on 01902 696 228 or fill in the form below to request a callback.