As the time we spend on lock down appears to be getting longer and longer, some of us are fortunate enough and happy to be working from home in the jobs we already have.
However, some of us are not that fortunate to still be in employment. Or, we’ve had some time to reflect and have realized that we actually hate our jobs.
Regardless of in which position you find yourself in, this time is boring, frightening and for most of us, frustrating as we will feel lost or like our careers have ground to a halt. One hard thing to come to terms with is that everything we’ve worked so hard to achieve might be crumbling, but this doesn’t mean that there isn’t time for fresh starts and new beginnings. Why not take this time to think about a career change?
And what’s more, utilizing your isolation time to develop yourself and your skills can make your resume stand out and make you increasingly attractive to employers as you have something to offer.
Below is a list of new careers that you can break into via a “gateway job” with only 6 to 12 weeks of training:
Cybersecurity is an ever growing and very popular industry. While, ideally, you do need a degree, if it’s something you are genuinely interested in, there are good online courses that you can use to help you get on the right career path.
Paid-For cybersecurity courses can be found at Udemy, Open University, Future Learn and Coursera. These all have their own strengths and weaknesses regarding accreditations, specializations or time and they are definitely a good place to begin.
However, if it’s not something you want to pay for (and who can blame you in this financially unstable time), Cybrary is also a fantastic option. After creating a free account, you get access to almost 500 courses, each ranked by their difficulty (Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced) and by vendors like Cisco, (ISC)2 and Microsoft. Sure they’ve got paid options too, but there are a ton of great courses you can access for free.
What is especially good about Cybrary’s courses is that they tend to focus on specific aspects of IT (i.e. cybersecurity), which means if there are area’s you’d prefer to specialize in then you can focus on that rather than have to take a larger course to access it.
If you are tech savvy, you might want to train to become a web developer, which is someone who specializes in the development of the world wide web. As near enough every single business in the world needs a website, the opportunities for web developers are endless.
There are two main categories of roles for web development, ‘front-end’ which focuses on user experience, and ‘back-end’ which focuses on the client side. Before kickstarting a career in web development, you need to decide which path you want to take. Or maybe you fancy yourself a “full-stack web developer” which basically means you are equally adept with both front-end and back-end development.
The customer service industry is huge. Including anything from call centers to front of house, to sales, the opportunities for development and progression in this field are endless.
There are a wide range of online courses available for customer service roles. A personal favorite is one provided by Alison, which focuses on problem solving (dealing with complaints, organizing compensation etc) and creating a customer-focused approach to customer service. Even better still, it’s free! Of course, there are other courses available for a range of different levels and budgets.
Once you have developed these skills, it gives you the opportunity and a head start to apply for customer service roles either during or after this pandemic.
Although limited to the type of photos you will be able to take at the moment (I think we can all agree, it’ll be hard to take portrait photos when in social isolation!) if you have the right equipment, training to be a photographer is actually fairly straight forward.
To begin with, some websites like Udemy.com offer excellent photography courses that don’t even require a fancy high-spec camera, just an iPhone. The course costs $179.99, but between me and you, they often have sales on so keep your eyes peeled.
You’ll learn how to use light correctly, how to compose images with basic rules, how to edit photos properly and most importantly, how to make money from photography. This is a great little way to enhance your photography skills so that you can become a photographer when self-isolation is over.
And, if you decide you want to take your learning a bit further, you could always consider completing a university degree once this is all over!
Becoming a blogger requires no specific qualifications… just a laptop, a bit of imagination and some dedication.
To get you started, you can start writing your own blogs during self-isolation. All we recommend doing is finding something interesting and useful to speak about. Perhaps you have a niche skill or some cool ideas. Whatever it is, make sure people will want to know about it. Once your niche is selected, pick a catchy and exciting blog name. Get your blog online and customize it to show your personality and interests. Now, for the hard part. Write your first post and get it published on your site. Then, go about promoting your post and monetize it with advertising.
Alternatively, a faster way to earn an incoming blogging is to do it as a freelancer for other already-existing blogs. Check out this article for some platforms that provide jobs to writers and bloggers.
I’ll agree, this might all sound too simple. There is certainly a huge element of skill in blog post writing, so to enhance your skills, there are many online courses available. Here’s a great list of online courses for writing that have the best instructors, are great value for money and most importantly, focus on how to make profitable blogs.
Commercial Truck Driving
Life on the road has always appealed to me… and I didn’t realize it was relatively easy to train for.
Before you begin, there are a few things you need to check before: make sure you’re over the age of 21 (I hope you don’t need to check this!), ensure you’re legally eligible to work and that you have a clean driver’s license (most courses will take you with a few minor parking fines, but if you’ve been busted for reckless driving, you might want to consider a different career).
The first step is to get your hands on, and study, The Official 2020 DMV Handbook (Driver’s Manual) for your state. This manual tells you all you need to know about obtaining your commercial driver’s license in your state. You’ll learn various traffic safety laws associated with commercial driving, and as laws often change, it is important to make sure you have the most up to date version.
You will then need to sign up for truck driving schools. Most schools provide both classroom and practical lessons (although, in the current pandemic, this might be different) that can be completed in as little as 30 days.
The final (and most important) step is to pass both a written and practical exam. After you’ve done this, the roads are your oyster!
‘Warehouse worker’ is a broad job description. To clarify, typical duties include unloading trucks, checking merchandise, cleaning and tidying, open containers and crates. There are lots of progression and development opportunities available for a career in warehouse work.
The steps to a career in this are the simplest yet. Often, you have high school diploma to apply. But, once you’ve got a job in warehouse work, you’re trained on the job and progression will occur naturally.
Generally speaking, certificates are not really required for the role. However, if you want to give yourself a head start, then you can work on gaining some specialized certifications that may be necessary depending on the scope and responsibility of a specific position. Gaining a certificate will also prove to employers you are motivated and want to advance in your role.
You can get an OSHA-compliant forklift certification online if your role will require this. It qualifies you to drive a forklift within a warehouse environment. You can also get certified in: distribution, production and inventory management and supply chains.
So, there you have it. A list of seven careers that can be kickstarted in 12 weeks of less.
As always, let me know your thoughts in the comments section. Have you tried one of these careers before? Do you like these online courses? Let me know!