As a founding member of the Career Advisory Board presented by DeVry University, I’ve been closely following the Employment Situation data issued by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Unfortunately, as of the end of June, we’re continuing to see minimal improvement in job market health. Because employment gains in 2011 are not occurring as quickly as initially anticipated, job seekers must be more proactive than ever to ensure that they can earn a living.
If you are unemployed or among the 8.6 million involuntary part-timers in the U.S. right now, you may want to revisit the fields in which you’re seeking work. According to BLS, employment in professional and technical services continued to increase in June (+24,000). Health care employment continued its upward trajectory as well (+14,000), and in fact, employment in this industry has risen by an average of 24,000 per month over the prior 12 months.
Heading into 2012, healthcare will continue to grow exponentially. Due to an aging population and expanding healthcare to those who previously could not afford coverage, one in 10 U.S. jobs expected to be in this sector by 2018.
If you don’t have experience in an in-demand field, that doesn’t mean you can’t move into one. Be aware, though, that career change doesn’t happen overnight and for most people, it involves a gradual process of increasing commitment.
In developing a resume and other promotional materials for the field you want to pursue, think about how your current skills and talents apply to the responsibilities you’ll hold in the new job. Then, ease into a new career one foot at a time. Perhaps this means earning a paycheck at your current job while doing a part-time internship in your new field. Alternatively, you could pursue a degree program from an accredited university like DeVry that offers flexible online and in-classroom learning options to accommodate current work and family obligations.
Finally, don’t limit your search to large, established companies. According to payroll processing company ADP, small and medium-sized businesses were largely responsible for the 157,000 private-sector positions added in June.