Any lengthy time away from the workforce can make getting back in a challenge, but for moms who left to pursue parenting, it can seem almost impossible. According to the Center for Work-Life Policy, 73 percent of women who try to return to work after leaving voluntarily have trouble finding a job. As you launch yourself back into the work world, keep these tips in mind.
Network Like Crazy
When you "know someone," you get pushed to the front of the line of potential applicants for a job. Stay in touch with your contacts in the professional world while you are staying home. Use LinkedIn and similar social media sites to find more network contacts. If you can, do some freelancing on the side while you care for your kids. Those network contacts will help you get back into the workforce.
Volunteer Your Services
If you don’t have a network to tap, do some volunteer work. Volunteering for nonprofits gets your face and name out there. Choose organizations close to the field in which you plan to start looking for work to make this the most effective.
The key to using your volunteer work effectively is making it look business-like on your resume. Phrase your school volunteer work like this: "Managed a group of 40 volunteers to raise $15,000 for a school fundraiser, which was a 10% increase over the past year."
Refresh Some Skills
If you are lacking skills, this is the time to refresh them. Look into classes at the library or local college where you can get up-to-date on office skills and computer technology. While these are not work experience, they can be put on a resume as skills.
The current job market is a tough one, and launching yourself into it after an extensive absence can feel overwhelming, but you can do it, and do it well, with a little planning and forward thinking.