Tackling those awkward questions that put you off sending out your CV


Possibly the single most important tip for older career changers is to ensure your skills are up to date. If you’ve been in the same job for a long period of time, you may have missed out on technological developments in other aspects of the job market that may make it difficult to find a new role. Fully research your desired position and the skills needed and then take training courses to bolster your skillset to match the job specifica-tion.


From suffering with illness to becoming a stay at home parent, there are many circum-stances that can keep you out of work. The trouble for those who have been out of work for a long period of time can come with getting back into the routine of working while proving your work ethic to both yourself and your potential employer. Do some volunteer-ing while you are searching for a permanent position. This will show commitment and help you get back into the swing of things. If you’re looking to return to a field you previ-ously worked in, refresher courses can help bring you up to speed with skills and industry developments.


If you’re making a u-turn it’s essential to take stock of transferable skills and look at how these can be applied to your desired role. Most jobs require some level of crossover skills that you can emphasise in the application process. For instance, employers will of-ten look for excellent communication and interpersonal skills regardless of the sector or role, so make a point of noting down these soft-skills on your application. Doing this will give you and your potential employer the confidence that you can already do part of your new job and won’t need to learn an entire bank of new skills.


For the almost 50% of us who describe ourselves as introverted, this can bring a few challenges when changing careers. Networking and meeting new people in interviews can make the job search process more difficult. Take some time to analyse your strengths and weaknesses and run through them with a trusted friend. By knowing your traits inside out, interviews will feel easier as you will know areas you excel at and areas for im-provement. Knowing and emphasising your strengths is a great way to boost your confi-dence in interviews and can relieve some of the pressure that comes with them. Also, try to find a job that will match your personality, avoiding typically extroverted roles such as sales or customer service.


Being a ‘job hopper’ can be looked upon negatively by some employers as it can be seen to show a lack of commitment – although of course there may be perfectly good rea-sons why you’ve not stayed in some roles for long. But with the recruitment process being costly both in terms of time and money, companies typically want new hires to commit to a role and add value. So it’s essential that you anticipate questions on the number of job roles on your CV and prepare answers that can justify your reasons. Be sure to highlight your achievements in each position on your CV and/or application, referencing quantifia-ble achievements where possible. Highlighting these successes shows that even though you have had a high volume of jobs, you have succeeded and made an impact in each one and will likely succeed in your desired role.

The ValueMyCV tool automatically checks your CV for common mistakes to help get you that interview, analysing it the way an HR pro would for things like career gaps as well as spelling, length, etc.

For more information and inspiration on new careers that match your skillset click here.