The business landscape is constantly shifting and evolving. Making long-term career plans and backup plans is becoming more difficult because, within the space of a few years, industries can change dramatically. Job security is not as widespread as it once was. In fact, some studies show that more workers than ever are now working jobs that offer little to no job security. This is partly because of the rise of the so-called gig economy, exemplified by apps such as Uber and Lyft which allow anyone to earn an income using their smartphone and car.
Because job security is becoming harder and harder to come by, it is important to be prepared for unexpected upheavals in your professional life and to always have an emergency plan to earn money if things do go wrong. With technologies like automation on the rise, many of us will find that in a few years, the professions we work in will have changed dramatically. In some cases, automation and machines are replacing human workers.
Skills and Knowledge
It is always good to intermittently assess what skills you have that are relevant to a job search. As we grow and gain experience, we naturally learn new skills and increase our knowledge, often without even realising it. Taking an occasional look at what marketable skills and talents you have will not only prepare you for an unexpected job search; it will also get you thinking about career options that you otherwise might not have considered.
Learning new skills or knowledge is an excellent way to increase your value to potential employers. Sometimes, the cost of learning new things is amazingly low when compared to the returns you can make from applying those skills and knowledge. An increasingly popular subject for study is that of investing. When many people think of investing they assume that they need a large amount of start-up capital to make it worthwhile, but this is not true. Investing is more open and accessible than ever before.
Similarly, many of us pick up a great deal of specialist knowledge over the course of our professional lives, even though we often don’t realise it until we find ourselves explaining aspects of our jobs to other people. Remember, however, that one consequence of the constantly changing marketplace is that knowledge can very quickly become outdated and depreciate in value.
Proof of Your Labour
Whatever profession you work in, it is always a good idea to build some kind of portfolio to demonstrate your abilities to a potential employer. If you have a hobby, for example, art or music, that could potentially form another source of income for you then you should always save what you create. If your current job is one that gives you regular performance reviews then saving these is a good idea, as it will allow you to very quickly and effectively demonstrate your work ethic and commitment to your career when applying for another job.
Many professionals have mixed feelings about the role of technology in today’s world. For some, technology is making their jobs easier and allowing them to work much more efficiently, but for others, the rise of technology is threatening their jobs directly. For most of us, the reality is somewhere in between. Technology has brought numerous benefits to us, but as it becomes more advanced it will inevitably start being able to handle tasks currently undertaken by workers.
The best solution to this dilemma is to find ways to make technology work for you. Not only are technology-related skills highly marketable but they will give you a more refined understanding of the issues surrounding technology in the workplace.
Code Academy is a website that allows anyone to learn how to code for free and from the comfort of their own home. Coding is a skill that is called upon at some point in almost all industries and is, therefore, an excellent basis for a career.
With the current state of the job market and the increasing scarcity of job security, it is a good idea to always be prepared for a switch in career. Taking stock of your existing skills and talents will help you work out what career paths you might enjoy and are most suitable for you. With the rise of online courses, it is easier than ever to learn new marketable skills and increase your value to potential employers.