Advice for mature members seeking employment

Aug 14, 2019

Research and know the market

Know what skills and experience are in demand. Do an assessment of how your skills, knowledge and experience rate relative to your peers and other candidates in the market.

Try something new

Don’t be afraid to take a lateral move that will allow you to use the skills, knowledge and experience you have in a new way. This could open up a whole new world of opportunities and enhance your marketability and career prospects.

Consider contract and interim roles

Broaden your experience. It may provide you with additional experience and exposure to a new sector or discipline. It will also demonstrate your versatility and ability to adapt.

Keep up to date with your CPD

Put the details of the courses on your CV. It is better to be seen to be busy from an employer’s perspective.

Remain open at all times to ongoing learning and development.

Stay in touch with technological developments

Stay up to date technologically – keep your IT skills, knowledge and experience relevant. Make sure that your CV gives a true reflection of your skills in this area.

LinkedIn

If you don’t already have a LinkedIn profile or have a slapdash attempt at one, then now is the time to invest time in a professional photo and bio for yourself to sell your skills set.

Hit the ground running

Demonstrate your ability to deal with change and to transition your skills, knowledge and experience. Show a consistent track record of achievement and development.

Positive mental attitude

Demonstrate and articulate your willingness to learn and your energy and drive to make a commitment to an organisation. Persevere and don’t give up.

Go easy on yourself

Don’t talk yourself down. Beware of what you are saying to yourself and if it’s negative try to change this sentiment. If you don’t believe in yourself it’s less likely that someone else will.

First impressions count

To a certain extent you can’t change a receding hair line or body shape, but you can focus on the way you carry yourself, the smile on your face, your ability to start a conversation and shake hands confidently. These are all simple business skills that can be developed and improved upon.

Sell yourself – blow your own trumpet

Clearly demonstrate the value you can bring to an organisation. Do this in your CV as well as in the interview. Showcase your track record. Tailor your CV to suit the particular role you are applying for. When preparing for an interview, have solid examples ready that demonstrate the relevance of your experience and also that clearly show the synergies that exist.

Demonstrate your flexibility

Show that you are flexible and open in terms of the role and salary level. It may be worthwhile taking a role at a lower salary level initially, proving your capabilities to the organisation and then using this track record as leverage to gain an increase. You will be in a much better position to negotiate at that stage when you have a track record and the company can see that you can really add value. You can also outline to the organisation what your plan is for the next 6 – 12 months. Starting a role on an initial part-time basis may also be a consideration or suggestion.

Keep an open mind in terms of trying something new. Push yourself outside of your comfort zone. Demonstrate that you are open to new ways of thinking and that you keep up to date in all areas.

Only apply for roles that are suitable

Don’t flood the market unnecessarily with your CV. You may reach a stage with a recruitment consultant that they will not take you seriously. It can be very demoralising to receive rejections and why subject yourself to this unnecessarily. It can really zap your confidence and motivation levels. Spending your time investing in suitable positions will help to increase your chances with roles that are suitable. This is a much more productive use of your time.

Ensure your salary expectations are realistic

Know the market and the rates on offer. Try to strike a balance between requesting a competitive salary that reflects the market and that does not devalue your experience. Obviously you do not want to price yourself out of the market either.

Interests

Show that you are active and keep fit. This can help in terms of the overall impression you present to an organisation.

For confidential and impartial career support visit our career's advisory website or contact Karin Lanigan on 01 637 7331 or email karin.lanigan@charteredaccountants.ie.