At some point in our professional lives, many of us are faced with the idea of changing jobs or seeking new professional experiences. Regardless of the reasons why it is a long way between the first call for change and the actual decision to go into another sector. Nevertheless, the challenges that arise from trying to find a position in a field where you hold no previous experience are very similar to anyone who wants to take a career turn.
One of the first concerns is the curriculum – after all, with no experience in the desired area, it is hard to compile a CV capable of impressing the recruiter. Often, the solution lies in the choice of format: if your past experiences don’t correlate with the new sector, it is not worth choosing a chronological resume. Instead, opt for a functional curriculum model where professional skills and candidate training are highlighted. Here, the strategy is not just to display the key results in previous job occupations, but to focus on the experiences which may have some relation to the new field.
Still, more than polishing and adapting your curriculum there are a series of other factors someone with no experience in the field should consider when applying for a job.
1. Keep an eye out on the news
In our modern society, much of what is happening in the world can be found virtually. Hence, social networks – especially LinkedIn – can be great tools for keeping updated on what is happening in the field you are interested in. Try to follow news and read articles about companies or trends in the segment in which you look for work.
2. Invest in developing new skills
The search for a new job is not and should not be your main occupation. Take advantage of the transition period to seek out specializations that will increase your qualifications and assist in the search for a new job. Go to workshops, enrol in courses, read books, chat with specialists in the market – in any way, consider this period as a phase to improve your knowledge.
3. Get acquainted with the company or position you are applying
If an opportunity arises for an interview, make sure you know as much as you can about the company. It helps to watch videos and news posted on social networks, find out what projects and programs they’re are involved in or even go as far as to reading reports about executives.
4. Consider temporary positions
Have you found a temporary vacancy? By all means, take it and make the most of this opportunity as it may be the gateway for another position in the same company in the future. If not, at least you will have accumulated a bit of experience in the area and can add that to your resume while looking for a new job.
5. Spend time networking
Another good strategy is to call upon your network of relationships and when you have an opening, expose your professional interest. If an opportunity arises, be objective and honest about your career expectations. In any case, cultivating your network of professional and personal contacts is something that must be done constantly, not just when you want to change jobs.
6. Have a positive attitude
A positive and confident attitude will go a long way when trying to find your way into a new field. Despite not having previous experience in that specific area, you have life experience and that counts, too. Be a protagonist of your own destiny – this is perceived and valued by recruiters and potential employers.