3 Tips for Job Seekers Returning to the Workforce

Subscribe to Email Updates

By Lisa Hutchinson

Topics: Job Search


Text Size

- +

3-Tips-for-Job-Seekers-Returning-to-the-Workforce.jpgAlmost everyone, at some point, has to take a period of time off work. The reasons vary–whether it’s to return to school, for parental leave, or even for a mental health break –the time off can be necessary and important. Whether this time off way planned or expected, however, the return to work can often be difficult and stressful.

Everything from getting into the flow of interviewing, starting a new job, and adjusting to a new –or long-forgotten–routine can make it difficult to adapt. For many returning to work, it feels as though they’re starting out for the first time. There’s also the added stress of comparing oneself to a new generation or younger cohort who is starting in the workforce, and next to whom many older job seekers feel inferior.

While it’s easy to feel overwhelmed and outdated, it doesn’t mean the situation is hopeless. Below are three tips for job seekers returning to the workforce. We trust you’ll find this helpful as you get back into the flow!

1. Make Sure Your Resume Is Ready for Action

As mentioned, there are many reasons people leave the workforce, and because of this, job seekers may or may not know when they’ll be returning. Regardless, it’s always good practice to keep your resume up-to-date at all times and find new and improved ways to market your experience and skills.

This involves staying abreast of industry language to make sure your resume uses the current lingo. This small action goes a long way in making you appear relevant and informed. It also boosts your confidence because you have some knowledge of industry trends when you go in for interviews.

Another thing to keep in mind is thatyou’re learning new skills every day, regardless of what you’re doing. Many employees look for well-rounded candidates, not just people with the exact skills and experiences they put on a job ad. Job seekers can differentiate their resumes by adding in important life skills and experience–like travelling, for example–that shows the diverse perspectives they can bring to a role.

You can also organize the experience on your resume by function rather than chronology. This helps to minimize the time you were off work.

2. Ask for Help

While many job seekers struggle with feelings of inferiority and irrelevancy when they’ve been away for a while, it’s important to ask for help when you need it. This could be in the form of going to a staffing agency and getting help finding employment. You can get great advice, help with interview preparation, an extra pair of eyes looking over your resume, and find out about new opportunities. Job seekers need to be proactive about getting help when it’s needed.

3. Embrace Networking

When planning a return to the workforce, job seekers should embrace the many benefits of networking. Networking doesn’t have to be an awkward or difficult task. You can network amongst your current social circle, for example. It’s really helpful for finding opportunities, learning about various career paths, and remembering, readjusting, and reorienting yourself in the professional world.

When you network with professionals–especially in the same industry–it helps you recall corporate culture, which can go a long way in helping you adjust. You may have to consider everything from the language you use to the clothes you wear, and seeing how other people talk, dress, and interact will give you some indication about what steps you need to take.

New Call-to-action

Lisa Hutchinson

I started with Liberty Staffing in 2004 as the Regional Business Manager of the London office. I have over 20 years of experience in the customer service and retail sectors, as well as leadership experience including Store Management, People Development and Recruiting. In 2016, our London location moved to a larger office in order to accommodate growth of our business, which included adding a Clerical Division.

Find Lisa Hutchinson on: