Returning to work after a long break from employment can be challenging. There’s a range of different reasons why people may decide to take extended periods off work, including ill-health, maternity/paternity leave, family commitments, the bereavement of a family member, or for any possible reason.
When looking for new jobs after returning to work, you will need to consider your skills, qualifications, and relevant work experience to identify work opportunities that are right for you and your situation. Alternatively, you may decide to go back to your old job with your previous employer.
In this case, you must persuade them you are fit to work again and fully capable of being an asset to the company and a valuable team member. You may even decide to ease yourself gently back into employment by starting only doing part-time hours. Carry on reading to learn more about what you should consider when returning to the workforce and looking for a new job.
Be Clear What You Can Offer Employers
Take time to reflect on some of your major strengths and attributes before starting your applications to new jobs. Try to ask yourself questions employers may consider when interviewing candidates for roles such as: ’Why should my business employ you?’.
Coming up with a captivating, well-structured elevator pitch that you have repeatedly practiced is an excellent way to make yourself come across well during job interviews. An elevator pitch will tell an interviewer who you are, what you can offer in the workplace and a brief explanation of your work experience. To formulate an effective elevator pitch you can use in interviews, try and think of catchy one-liners that accurately summarize your key skills and what you will offer employers as a staff member.
Find Out Whether You Meet the Job Requirements
To not waste time and energy for yourself and your interviewer, it’s essential to know before applying to a new job whether or not you meet the necessary job requirements that the hiring employer is after. For example, if the minimum requirement for candidates to be eligible to apply for a job posting is a college major in Engineering, but you do not have a college major in any discipline, you will not meet the job requirements for that specific job posting.
Consider the Scope for Career Progression
When applying to a new job with an organization or a business, it’s essential to look out for a career path and opportunities that indicate how you can progress. You don’t want to find yourself coming to a dead end and realizing after several years working somewhere that you have no hope of ever receiving a promotion.
Suppose you want to discover more about how you can progress in your career and achieve your goals after returning to work. In that case, you may be interested in the excellent career coaching services offered by Placement. After a few Zoom sessions with one of the expert career coaches at companies like this, you will have a much clearer idea about the jobs you will apply for, and how you will approach the job searching process when trying to return to work.
Do Research Before Applying to Jobs
Before deciding to apply to a job posting when you’re trying to return to work, make sure you do lots of research into the employer and the job role. Have a good look into the company’s values, mission, and goals and see if they align with your values and career ambitions as an individual. You may want to look into the specific work-related duties you will be required to carry out and think about whether you have the necessary skills, qualifications, and work experience to do the role.
Weigh Up If the Salary Package is Fair
Another thing to consider when taking on a new job and returning to work will, of course, be the benefits and downsides of the salary package offered by the employer. Although money certainly isn’t everything in life, you need money to pay your bills and provide support for your loved ones.
It’s a good idea to try and break down the salary you will generate month by month and then week by week, so you know whether you’ll have enough coming in to allow you to budget correctly to avoid getting into any debt. Your employer may even offer generous incentives, such as bonuses for impressive performance. Bonuses may encourage you to work that little bit harder.
If you consider the salary package offered to you as undervaluing your skills, professional experience, and the contribution you will make to your employer on a daily basis, walk away from the job offer or don’t apply to it at all. Before accepting an employment offer, you must seriously contemplate whether you deem the salary package to be fair or not. Looking at the number of holiday days you get a year may also influence your decision to accept a job offer when trying to return to work.
Health Conditions May Affect Your Capacity to Work
If you’ve taken time off work due to ill health, you need to think about how your health condition(s) could affect your ability to carry out your work. For example, suppose you have recently suffered from severe cardiac disease and are trained in a heavy, physical job. In that case, you may no longer be fit to do that job, and your new employer may see taking you on as a significant risk.
Try and be realistic and think about how you can do your job despite your health conditions. You may be fortunate enough to be able to do your job remotely from home, so that’s one avenue you can try and explore. However, remote working is not a feasible option for all job roles.
Your employer is responsible for looking after their workers’ health, and work-related health problems are bad for business and result in a 4-6% GDP loss for most countries across the world year after year. Make sure your employer treats you fairly and equally to the other employees and does their best to make any fair and reasonable adjustments to facilitate your return to work.
If you are returning from maternity or paternity leave after taking time off work to spend quality time with your new child, you need to consider childcare when returning to work.
Who will look after your young one while you are out a work? One option is your spouse or partner, but this is not always possible as you may both be working long hours to bring money in. Perhaps you can come to arrangements over childcare with a close friend or a family relation who doesn’t live too far away. Alternatively, you will need to pay for the services of a childminder for your kid or send them to a child nursery center. As long as you manage to put suitable childcare arrangements in place, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t be able to return to work after having a kid.
It’s vital to think deeply about you and your family’s needs when looking for a new job and returning to work. Try not to overstretch yourself, stay realistic, and remember to prioritize your health and wellbeing.