With the recent changes in the workforce, partly because of the Coronavirus pandemic and partly because of the swinging economy, you might be considering a job change. This is understandable but can also be daunting to those who have been in the same roles for a long time or who dislike the uncertainty that can come with change.
Whether you want to leave a profession because of policies or practices you do not believe in or you feel that it is time to move on from a dead-end job, it’s understandable that you might be reluctant to make that change out of fear of making a wrong decision.
To hedge against the uncertainty while you weigh your options, now could be the perfect time to learn a new skill. You can keep your current job or move to a similar one in the same field while you acquire the skills or a degree that can prepare you for larger changes. University of Phoenix offers many degree programs for those who are in the workforce and looking to bolster their skills or change career directions. These programs are designed with flexible schedules, so you can continue working if you need to.
Changing jobs or careers is a major decision, even if you add on to your education. Let’s take a look at some considerations that may help guide your way to the choice that is ultimately best for your unique situation.
But I’m Happy Where I Am
Even if you are happy in your current job, you should always keep in mind that things can change quickly. Professionals should ready themselves for unexpected change in either jobs or professions. One way to do this is to keep your resume updated over the years so it’s always ready in case you need it.
Professionals can also benefit by continuing to stay connected to their network, either through LinkedIn, industry events, or personal outreach to former mentors and colleagues. It can also help to invest in professional development from time to time with a new course study or continuing education. This can keep you fresh within your own industry or help you expand your knowledge into other areas.
Signs It Could Be Time to Change Jobs
You might be considering a new job in the same career or a completely different field. Exciting and scary at the same time, it can be difficult to know when it is the right time to actually make the change. While job changes can be emotional, you can benefit by sticking to facts and evaluating certain metrics. These can be a good indicator, depending on your personal circumstances, of whether you should make the leap.
Industry and Market Changes
Watching the changes in your current and chosen industries can help you determine whether it is better to stick in the same industry and move to another job, stay with your current employer or change industries altogether. One way to do this is to explore the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). You can read up on both your current job and the other career paths you are considering.
The BLS can show you the expected job growth for a specific career, generally with figures for the next decade. An industry with faster than expected or consistent growth is likely to be more stable and provide more options for employment. If a career shows slower than expected growth, you could benefit from making a change or reconsidering that option based on future prospects.
Don’t be caught off guard by ignoring the signs in your current position. Look for leadership changes, missed targets for more than one quarter, internal changes and resources being diverted from your department. These could be signs that your company may change its business plans, hiring targets or existing personnel.
If you notice one change, it’s time to start making a plan so that you’ll be better prepared in case something happens. Updating your resume because of one missed quarterly target could seem like overreacting. But if the company misses its next projection and things start to become unstable, you will be ahead of the game.
If everything in your industry looks great and your company is doing well overall, make sure your department is also doing well. Businesses may restructure to save money by downsizing certain departments. Restructuring, passing over you and others over for promotions and reallocating resources for the department can all be signs that your employer might make significant changes or that your growth with the company could be limited moving forward.
While new technology can be a great way to expand business and cut margins, signs of some tools taking priority in your industry could be a sign it’s time to make a change. Tools like artificial intelligence (AI), for example, can eliminate the need for as many staffers since the technology can do the work of many.
Defining your personal goals and regularly checking in on them can be a great way to create a baseline for yourself and your career. Your values should align with your employer’s values. If your employer’s values change, it might be time to look for another job if you want to stay in the same industry. However, if the values of the industry as a whole seem to be changing, it might be time to look for a new career.
You should also consider salary and benefits together. The two are not always tied together, and sometimes it can be better to take a lower-paying job that has more benefits when you consider the costs. Intangible benefits, like reducing or eliminating a commute or finding more time to be at home, are also important. It might be time to look for a job that allows you a hybrid work set up, even if the pay is a little lower.
As part of your personal and professional goals, consider the University of Phoenix for a new degree program or continuing education