Preparing Yourself To Find Jobs in a Different Industry

Changing careers can be exciting but challenging. You may face problems due to the absence of necessary qualifications in the new field. As Zig Ziglar said, “Where you start is not important as where you finish” and "You cannot climb the ladder of success dressed in the costume of failure.” These quotes are not only inspiring but life-changing. It is important that you stop waiting for things to happen. So stop merely searching for your dream job and start doing it.

The process of job search can be long and arduous for those who wish to switch to another industry to find new work opportunities. Changing industries requires detailed planning with a checklist of tactical steps that will help you increase the probability of finding a job in a specialty other than yours. Let us take a look at useful ways in which you can prepare yourself for a career change.

  1. Start by emptying your cup – If you are not well-versed with the industry you wish to join, you can start educating yourself by reading books, joining associations and attending trade shows and other events. Learn as much as you can. Also, reading newsletters and visiting industry websites will allow you to stay updated with the latest trends and technologies.
  2. Make contacts to expand your network (both online and offline) It always helps to connect with people and use their expertise to find out about opportunities in the job market. You should focus on building a strong network of influential people in the field that you wish to enter. Find unique ways to approach them and once you build a connection you must maintain it. For instance, if you are an engineer and wish to become a writer, you can always get in touch with influential people from the field of journalism and offer to contribute for their online editions. This way you can set the ball rolling.
  3. Deconstruct your resume and tweak it – Before deciding to switch, make sure you have certain transferable skills that can be utilized in your new industry. Once you know of the capabilities that will prove to be useful in your next job, begin to highlight them in your resume. Do not use the standard format of CV and cover letter because that is designed to highlight your work experience first. For a career change, the hero of the CV should be the transferrable skills. Recruiters always scan your CV to see how your past work experience matches up to their current needs.
  1. Seek to convince, even if nobody wants to listen – You must get ahead of recruiters who just want to consider job applicants with specific industry experience. You need to convince them that the experience you gained from your former stint is relevant enough to teach you adequate functions for this one. When you spell out how your experience can translate into usefulness for the industry in concern, it will outweigh the lack of time devoted to the particular specific field. So you can begin to find a common thread between the two jobs and base your strengths on this similarity.

5.  Learn their language – When in Rome, do as the Romans do. When you’re going to enter a new domain, it is in your best interest that you minimize the impression of you being a fish out of water. It is advisable to interact with industry professionals, read blogs and later search about jargon and their meanings in the new sphere. This may seem like it would bring superficial results, but to begin with it will give the hiring managers enough confidence to keep conversing with you during a telephone interview. The idea is not to be dismissed upon the disclosure of non-familiarity with the subject. Talking in their terminology will help you show that you serious enough and are ready to learn. You must also insert these terms as keywords in your CV to help the Applicant Tracking System acknowledge you.

6.    Expect to take a step backwards – Your professional career may have been stellar till now, but when it comes to professional satisfaction, higher pay or a better work-life balance another industry could win your heart. But you may be expected to give up a lot to make this switch. Sometimes even the most beneficial transferrable skills might not be as supportive in a new industry as in the old. When the recruiter learns about this, there are chances that he will try to negotiate your position and salary. You should be willing to listen to your potential employers when they pull those strings. Don't be hell-bent on a promotion or pay hike. However, do not just give away all of your seniority and life-long efforts only to get a foot in the door.

Author bio: Devika Arora is a professional writer with expertise in the domain of job search and career development. She has been writing informative articles that help boost the employability of professionals and helps them in the job search process. At present, she is professionally affiliated with a popular job search portal.

Ways in Which Resume has changed in the Past Decade

If it’s been a long time that you pursued a job opportunity chances are high that your resume is obsolete by the current standards. Besides, when you are out of touch of something, getting back to it does take some time and efforts. Nothing is truer when it comes to job hunting and resume is still the currency on which jobs are given to candidates. Therefore, if you want to land that dream job opportunity, read on this article to know how resume has changed over the past one decade.

Those who think resume writing is a recent phenomenon are living on a different planet altogether. The first record of a resume dates back to 1482, and the maverick inventor, scientist, painter and genius Leonardo da Vinci is credited for writing the first professional resume.  Starting from 1930s and travelling towards the end of the 20th century, resume became an institution. From a mere formality to a compulsion, resume’s journey has been nothing if not exciting.

From being a hand-written document to transforming to a nicely drafted Microsoft Word document, and now appearing in the forms of well designed info-graphics, resumes have changed beyond recognition over its entire course of history. Changing ways of job hunting, technology intrusion and improving standards have been the major driving factors behind the transformation of resume. Past one decade has been particularly eventful with Internet emerging as a major factor in finding a new job.

Earlier resumes served only an informative purpose, offering the recruiter an overview of the professional and academic accomplishments of the candidate. However, over the time there have been changes in how resumes are perceived. In the current age, resumes are considered as personalized marketing document, selling you as a product. 

You are marketing yourself to the employer. Just like two brands of cola market themselves in spite having the same product inside, you will also have to sell yourself in the crowded job market using various tactics. Highlight your achievements, traits and characteristics that are your USP. What distinguishes you from the rest? What makes you better than the other guy? All these points should be communicated through your resume.    

In the modern scenario, keywords in a resume make the whole difference. Most companies today use applicant tracking system software which has pre-fed keywords to filter resumes before sending them at the human resource desk. These ATS were not available 10 years back and hence keywords were not that important a decade back. But today, the importance of keywords in a resume can’t be overstated. They help connect resumes with current openings, ensuring future searches results in appropriate resumes matching to the hiring professional’s requirements. 

Visual Elements
Who could have thought that a video can serve the purpose of a resume? Or that a CV could look like this? But this is only the start. There is a revolution of sorts happening in the resume writing industry, with previously unheard and unimagined visual elements being part of the CV.  Infographic resume is the hot trend right now. In this format you can chart your career as a timeline, plot your strengths on a skill map, use charts and graphs to break down the types of industries you’ve worked for.  If you have the ability to distill your job experience in 140 characters or less, then a ‘tewsume’ or a Twitter resume is the right option for you.  A twesume is a short bio or resume that one can tweet, message or email to potential employers. You can try including one or two hashtags relevant to your industry to catch the hiring manager’s attention.

Another fast rising industry trend is visual resume on the presentation-sharing site, SlideShare. You can find a range of existing presentation resumes as a reference to start building your own. The latest fad is video resume, creating which is as risky as it innovative it is.  A one to three-minute video should be more than enough to explain in clear and compelling way why you’d be a good fit for the job. The video can vary with the type of the job which you are applying to. For instance, a job as finance manager could have a video resume with you sitting in finance office like sitting, dressed in a manager’s suite. Similarly, those applying to a position like teacher can create a video resume with classroom like setting.

Contributor: Saurabh Tyagi