Return to Work Interview Tips

Restarting your career after a break can be a very difficult process for some professionals. There are many challenges that such professionals have to face while looking for suitable roles after a career break. First is that you need to get back to grips with your industry and how it is functioning. Companies are always acquiring new tools, software, and techniques for their regular tasks and one might need to upgrade their skills accordingly before getting into the workforce again. 

Another challenge is to refresh and rework your resume to accommodate your career gap and impress the recruiters with a great interview. 

In this article, we will see how to nail the interview after a career break with the help of some interview tips. 

Research and Update

Being on a career break means that you have not been in touch with the industry, current best practices, changes that have come about in your role, and the new skills that have become vital to your job. You would also be out of the loop when it comes to industry news and process updates.

To get acquainted with the new skill requirement you should upskill with help of self-learning, or guided certification courses. Also, sign up for industry newsletters, mailers, and blogs to be updated on the news front when it comes to your industry.

You would also need to keep an open eye for the relevant opportunities coming in and the skill requirement for the same. All this involves continuous research to get you up to speed with the current industry scenario. 

The knowledge gained from your research will help you present yourself more confidently in an interview. You will also be able to answer most of the questions related to industry and your role and hence improve your chances of getting recruited.

Refresh your Resume

Your resume is your first mode of contact with the recruiter. It is like your representation before you actually get to meet a recruiter. Therefore, it should be on point, include all details in a very concise manner, and not miss any detail of your career and qualifications to date. 

As it is said, “CVs don’t last forever and they’re also never complete”. It means that you need to constantly upgrade your resume and tailor it according to the requirement each time you apply for a job

This means you should always be updating, adding to it, and tailoring it to every job you apply for; and this is even more important for those who are returning to work after a career break. 

Reworking the CV could include giving it a new layout, changing the fonts, adding your most recent work experience, giving a brief about your career gap, adding your relevant certifications and volunteer work. You need to also refresh your CV in accordance with the current year. 

First Impression is a lasting impression

Appearing for an interview is an opportunity to present yourself in your best possible self to the recruiter. In addition to your experience, knowledge, and academic achievements, confidence is the key here. Recruiters want to see if you would be able to get back into the workforce with a positive attitude and merge well with the culture, apart from being able to handle your job skillfully. 

It is important to be comfortable while appearing for the interview. Prepare well and brush up your skills. Plan your travel, and keep time in hand to avoid any end moment rush to the venue. Know all about the company and the role you are applying for. These small things help you be prepared for your interview and be comfortable and confident on the day of the interview.

An interview is a conversation between the interviewer and you, and not a one-way conversation. If you see a perfect opportunity to work at the organization, they should also feel that you are a perfect employee for their organization. You should ask questions about the company, their culture, team dynamics, and other things that concern you. 

Final thoughts

The interview is your one and only opportunity to prove your suitability to employers, so use it demonstrate your lasting commitment to your industry – and also to ensure the role you’re applying for is right for you.

And no matter what your situation, never apologise for your gap. Speaking positively about your time away is a great way to demonstrate confidence in your ability to re-enter the workforce.

After all, whether it was due to unforeseen circumstances (e.g. an ill relative or redundancy), or it was a planned gap – you’ll have gained a number of transferable skills (from commitment to self-motivation) to help you stand out to employers.

At Great Learning, we help you with one on one career guidance sessions where industry experts guide aspiring professionals with the right moves to secure a highly rewarding job. Our team assists professionals with effective resume building, inform them about available roles and organise mock interviews to prepare them for their dream job. If you are a fresh graduate, an entry-level employee, or an experienced professional looking for growth or career transition, upskill with our courses. We have tailored some of the best in class programs in the field of data science, business analytics, artificial intelligence and machine learning, cybersecurity, and cloud computing. 

Explore the various courses offered by Great Learning and and learn in-demand skills. 

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