After taking time off to have kids, it can be daunting to try to re-enter the workforce when the contents of your resume are now several years old. However, there are some steps you can take to freshen up your resume and assure potential employers that you are the employee they’re looking for.
· Before you’re ready to start the job search, start volunteering with a club or service organization. This experience can provide you with recent professional letters of reference and help fill time gaps in your resume.
· Create a profile on Linkedin and fill it with the contents of your resume. 93% of job recruiters use Linkedin to find new employees. Connecting with former coworkers and workplaces can help you access opportunities and connections that will ultimately land you your first job out of the gate.
· Contact previous employers and references to update them on your life. Let them know that you’re preparing to enter the job market again, and ask if they’re still comfortable attesting to your professional abilities.
Starting Your Own Business
There are currently 8.3 million women-owned businesses in the US alone – comprising 30% of the nation’s private businesses. Last year these businesses earned a total of $1.3 trillion in revenue, an increase of 58% from fifteen years ago (Mashable).
Starting your own business can be difficult and demanding, but also incredibly rewarding – as evidenced by the high revenues generated by women-owned businesses. If you have a business idea, running with it could be a good career choice for you.
· Be sure to take the right steps towards forming a new business: create a business plan, seek financial advice, form relationships with banks and potential business partners, and emphasize preparation.
· There are a number of private, state, and federal business development grants available for women entrepreneurs to help you get your business off the ground.
· You can get a lot of advice and assistance from the US Small Business Administration’s Office of Women’s Business Ownership.
Getting an Education
There are plenty of education options available to moms who are getting a degree for the first time or want to switch to a new career path with better potential earnings. Scholarships and grants are available for student moms; you can also get federal financial aid to help pay for your classes.
There are many colleges and degree programs that are specifically designed to fit the schedule of parents and working moms. They can offer shorter semesters, classes one or two nights per week, or combined on-campus and online courses that are convenient for your schedule. Think about your job interests, and consider careers in:
· Science. Degrees in environmental science, forensics, computer science, and other subjects can put you on track to a profitable career assessing the environment, investigating crime scenes, writing software, creating webpages, and more.
· Medicine. You don’t have to become an MD to have a profitable career in medicine. A four-year kinesiology degree can put you on track to work in sports medicine, athletics and fitness, ergonomics, and more. You can use the degree as a launching-off point to become a physician’s assistant or physical therapist.
· Math. Do you have a head for numbers? Your career options can range from accountancy and finance to statistical analysis. Statisticians, in particular, are in increasingly high demand in businesses and government agencies alike.
If you are interested in developing your career further while your kids are young or in school, consider the above options for re-entering the workforce, starting your own business, or going back to school.
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