Going Back to a Career After Raising a Family

Raising a Family

Balancing career and family is something many of us find to be a challenge and many parents choose to take a few years away from the workplace to raise our children, but what happens when we decide it is time to get our career back on track?

Learn online

In many cases the path back to employment is blocked because the workplace has moved on and the skills we once brought to our jobs are no longer relevant or have become outdated.

As children get that bit older parents find they have a little more time to themselves compared to when the children were newborns or toddlers. That extra hour or two in the day is an ideal opportunity to prepare the ground for returning to employment, perhaps by taking an online course. Nothing says dedication and determination to a potential employer quite like someone willing to pursue learning opportunities in their spare time.

Arming yourself with relevant qualifications during your time off work means you can keep up to date with the latest developments in your chosen career and can demonstrate to employers the relevancy of your skills compared to other candidates, even if you have spent time away from a workplace environment. For instance if your chosen career is in the medical administration field you can get your executive MHA from USC online and be up to date with the fast-changing nature of healthcare implementation and management, while at the same time gaining a qualification from a prestigious education provider.

The great thing about online learning is that it can be done from home at a pace that fits in with your other commitments, and raising children is a commitment like no other, meaning time available to do other things is at a premium. Many online courses have flexible learning arrangements and deadlines, which suits parents with very young children.

Taking the first steps

You will know when you are ready to return to work; however, you might feel cut-off from the world of gainful employment after spending a prolonged period at home. Get in touch with former colleagues and ask them if they know of any relevant openings. Network with professional organizations and get a feel again for what it is like to be in such an environment. From career coaches to recruitment firms, they are many different options for exploring what opportunities might be out there and what you can do to start your search for employment.

Using your new skills

Just because you stepped away from your career to raise your children does not mean you have failed to acquire new skills in the process. From time management and multi-tasking to creative problem solving and behavior management, you learn the type of skills from raising children that are as relevant to and valuable in the workplace as they are in the home. Do not be afraid to talk about what you have learnt from being a parent when you start to go to interviews. There is a good chance that the interviewers are parents themselves and understand and appreciate the challenge of rearing a family. If you have the ability to understand and motivate a child, then dealing with clients and/or colleagues will be very straightforward indeed.

Parents need a workplace that has some flexibility that will take into account those times when you cannot be two places at once because your child needs you. Look for those employers who value their employees regardless of their circumstances. Working from home is an increasingly popular option, especially among forward-thinking employers, and it might suit your circumstances to still be at home at for at least some of the time. It might even suit your spouse or partner to work from home themselves or to work part-time once you have decided to resume your career. Some organizations have job sharing options in place or use delayed start and finishing times to the working day to better suit those balancing employment and family commitments.

To get your career back on track following time away from the workplace ensure your skills and educational qualifications are up to date so you become the job applicant a potential employer cannot afford to turn away. At the same time, do not sell yourself short. The determination and ambition that drove your professional ambitions before you had children is still there.