Marketing yourself for a career change

How do you present yourself persuasively to employers when you’re making a career change?

Package yourself in a way that is appropriate to the sector or role that you’re targeting.  The research which you’ve carried out  before deciding to make the change should be the basis for helping you to work out what transferable skills and experience you need to highlight in your cv, application or interview.

Don’t talk about what your potential employer can do for you and how they can help you in your career change, but what you can do for them and how you could be an asset for their company.

Convince a potential employer that  you can contribute right away and show your commitment so that they don’t think your career change is only a passing fad or that you are just trying to get any job and will move on if something better comes along.

Create a functional or skills based CV which groups your achievements under skill areas and lists jobs and dates later. Don’t forget about soft skills such as team-working or communication.  Show that you can adapt quickly and can take on a challenge.

At interview, be prepared to answer questions relating to your lack of experience in the field. Don’t disagree with the interviewer when they challenge you about this, but instead reiterate your transferable skills along with specific examples from your previous experience.

Use Linkedin  to search for people currently working in your target organisations to get a better sense of the type of person they employ.  Try to connect with people from the sector you wish to join. You can also use Twitter to follow relevant groups, organisations and professionals from the sector.

Changing careers can be a rewarding and exciting way to enrich your life.