Many people take career breaks, especially women who choose to take a few years off to nurture their young children. Trying to rejoin the workforce can be daunting, but there are nevertheless several career options that is relatively easier to re-enter even after a break from the workforce.
1. Teacher (Traditional, Tuition, Creative fields, Online etc.)
One of the best options to re-enter the workforce after a long break is teaching. Especially if you have a university degree, this is one of the easiest to get into due to the ever-green demand. Even if you don't have a degree, there is still a wide variety of options, and almost any skill or interest you have can be transferable as a "teachable" option. For instance, music, art, fitness or even coding for kids! With technology, you can even consider online teaching, which expands the variety of jobs you are able to take on by accessing the global student marketplace.
Unlike other jobs, teaching doesn't really discriminate against long breaks. While you do need to upskill yourself with the relevant materials, the most important is probably a friendly attitude and desire to nurture students.
If being a school teacher is too daunting (you do need NIE training), tuition teachers is probably the way to go. Not only is it very flexible in nature, you can do it at both a centre or at home, and there is always a demand in Singapore. If you're good with young kids, you can also consider kindergarten and Montessori.
If you have unique skills and interests, creative industries such as art classes, pottery classes, or even calligraphy are great fields that you can teach to both kids & adults. Another lucrative area are music classes such as violin or piano. If you have a science or math background, you can consider Coding Camps for kids. If you're a fitness enthusiast, there are so many areas you could explore. From taekwondo to kids, yoga and pilates classes, and even personal training. As you can see, the variety of teaching fields are only getting wider, so be open to opportunities and think outside the box!
Additionally, online teaching is a growing field. This could range from university part-time lecturing, teaching English online to kids from other countries (or any other language), and even creating your own online courses.
Finally, it is very important to keep your resume relevant. If you've been out of the workforce for some time, make sure you know how to craft it to appeal to employers. See our articles on how to craft your resume here.
If you're just taking baby steps to re-joining the workforce, and want to break into more traditional industries, one way is to start freelancing in the relevant field. Usually, this is where you had previous experience in this field, and you want to re-join this industry.
This is a good way to close your career gap, and to show your employer that you do have current knowledge and skills which are relevant. Usually with a 6 month - 1 year freelancing period, you should be marketable enough to traditional employers again.
Freelancing has lower barriers to entry to start which is very helpful. You can also start with unpaid gigs to build you reputation.
This is particularly suitable for consulting based jobs, or design-based jobs, as you can use your freelance work to showcase your recent work, and build up your CV and portfolio that way.
Another great career that you can attempt after being out of the workforce for awhile is in the e-commerce space. The past few years has been a e-commerce boom and the opportunities are endless. As long as you are open to junior positions, you should be able to get a job in the e-commerce sector. E-commerce companies are huge and there is always a role for you.
A related field is social media. There are lot of opportunities for social media and marketing work. Some are also remote based. If you're interested in this area, and fairly savvy, employers in this area aren't too strict on professional background or criteria for such work. The key is that you have to be interested and are good in this area. You can help companies manage their social media account, prepare content, edit photos etc. You can also join influencer marketing agencies or advertising companies who work in the social media space.
4. Side-hustles are great resume-builders
Another helpful thing you can do is to start a side hustle while you're preparing to re-join the work force. Any side hustle can be added to your resume, from small freelance gigs like writing articles online, running a blog, having an online shop on Carousell, being a Grab driver etc.
If you're running any kind of small business, a wide variety of transferable skills will be used, be it in sales, marketing, e-commerce etc. All of this can be used to demonstrate to future employers about your marketability.
Finally, a career in sales is something you can always fall back into. If you have the passion, personality and skills, you can always go into sales. Sales is one area where results is king. In fact, if you can convince your employer to hire you, that is in and of itself a demonstration of sales skills.
There is also no limit of industries that require sales people and you can choose one according to your own interest and skill-sets.
Compensation for sales roles are also very high, as commission is usually the large part of compensation and the sky is the limit!
If you have any career questions, please drop us an email any time at firstname.lastname@example.org, we're always happy to assist you.