Post # 1
Does anyone have any advice for making a career change? I’m currently working as an engineer in a very specialized industry. I’ve been at my current position for 7 years, it was my first full time job out of college. I have a lot of transferable skills mostly in project/task management, coordination and technical writing.
I’m looking to move into HR or marketing. I’d also be open to being on the buisness side of things, project management or something like that. I’d really like to get out of the engineering world and industry. I’d love to move into IT or tech company of some sort. I think eventually I would make a great Busniess Analyst if I could get in with a company that has developers.
I’ve sent out a ton of applications but haven’t had any luck. I’m open to taking something more entry level but I’m afraid no one is going to take my career change desire seriously (even though I’m pretty clear on my resume and cover letter).
Any one have a tips or tricks? Sucess stories?
Post # 2
mainebride092018 : Commenting to follow. I’m a biologist looking to possibly make a similar switch. I’ve applied for several jobs and geared my resume more toward my business/management skills, but no luck, just generic rejections if anything at all. I think this is really a situation where you need to know someone who can get you in the door.
Post # 3
The thing about HR is that most companies want someone who has a degree in human resource management.
The thing about project management is that most companies want to see that you either have experience managing from beginning to end and not just dabbling in project management type skills. And where they want to see that you have some kind of certification like from PMI.
Technical communication is certainly a booming field as is user experience. However a portfolio is going to be a much bigger asset to you in the interview process for technical communication than a resume will. So if you’re looking at either of those directions then I would start putting together a portfolio with samples of your writing and or other design projects that you’ve done.
So at this point I would start looking at the qualifications that are required of jobs that you are interested in and see whether or not you’re willing to put in any sort of additional education such as obtaining a certificate.
Post # 4
- Wedding: April 2016 - Gorse Hill, Surrey, UK
I’ve changed career twice. Both times I did some short courses in that field to boost my understanding and prospects. The first time I did an 8 week begginners dog grooming course and it was only supposed to be as a hobby, but i saw an opening and decided to give it a shot. after a year I knew it definitely wasnt for me so wen back to admin/reception jobs. I quickly realised in all my other office jobs i actually enjoed and was quite good at the finance side of things, so started a bookkeping course which took me about 15 months and when I qualified as a bookkeeper went looking for an accounts assistant role. I’ve been doing that since March and could not be happier! I’ve foudn all of my transferable skills have been really valuable, but the additional qualifications and experience in that field really propelled me in the right direction and turned employers heads, especially as I had done them in my own time it showed a willingness.
Post # 5
As someone who is currently working on a marketing team at a major tech company, I will say the #1 thing people are looking for is relevant experience, even at the lowest entry levels. It doesn’t have to be your current title, but what else have you done or are you doing to show your interest? You could volunteer, take marketing/research courses (no need for a degree), and etc.
it means a lot to hiring managers that the candidates coming in are genuine and want to build their career. If you show dedication, and can write a cover letter that expresses that, then they should be at least offering a phone screen.
Also, if you have friends, try asking for a referral to their company if they’re in tech. Referrals make up about 35% of our annual new hires!
Post # 6
I made the jump from Chemist to Project Manager. My experience is in the PM role. Definitely do some PMI training and look into getting your PMP. I started my job transition within the company I worked for already. I took a job as a project coordinator first to get some experience working with projects and PM’s. Found a mentor and worked with them as well to take on more responsibility. I actually started while I was still a chemist doing some project management on the projects I was working on with my mentor. Really the best way to start is to reach out to find a mentor in your current company. With you’re experience there, they know you and will help you get into where you want to go, especially if you have a good reputation there. They are more likely to work with you than a new company taking a chance on you with no experience.
I will say that if you’re looking to get into Project Management, your experience in the technical world will be of a lot of use. I started out managing chemistry based projects and my experience as a chemist, helped out immensely. It got me my foot in the door. I now manage engineering projects. Once you have experience managing projects, it’s a lot easier to switch industries.
Post # 7
annabananabee : That’s all good advice. I’ve looked into PMI, not sure if it’s an option while in my current role. I’m traveling quite a bit right now so it’s hard to add something else to my plate. I did send in some writing examples with a couple applications I should probably keep trying to do that, unfortuneately we have confidentality agreements with a lot of our clients but I can send out some documents that are public record.
Post # 8
lolac : Thanks for the advice. Do you think online courses are acceptable? I know a lot of the employers around here like to see in person classes but the ones held at our local university are all during the work day and I’m out of vacation time. I also would hate to sign up for one just to find out I have to travel that day to attend a meeting or go to a site inspection.
I am planning on going in and talking to the hiring manager at my husband’s company, hoping they might be able to find a role for me there. Most of my friends are nurses or teachers but I have put the word out in our circle of friends.
Post # 9
Sunshine024 : Great advice. I’ll look into the PMI. I unfortuneately have run into many dead ends getting a mentor at my current company. My group has been “mentoring” me for 7 years to take on more project management tasks but we can’t seem to retain designers so I end up spending part of my time working project management but spend way too much time continuing to do design to progress far in project mangement. Plus my bosses are all constantly on the road so it’s hard to really get any help from them.
I have taken several small projects from start to finish as the unoffical PM, I might need to better word that on my resume since that’s not my exact job title.
Post # 10
mainebride092018 : online courses should be ok. It’s all about how you’re going out of your way to show you’re interested in a total shift.
It’s definitely possible to take online courses and add to your resume!
Post # 11
Project Management is part of the career track for a consulting engineer. It would make the most sense to do that rather than start from scratch in another industry. If your current company isn’t giving you the career progression at the pace you want, why not go to a different firm? The engineering market is hot right now.