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The advantages of upskilling in your career

With the Furlough Scheme coming to a close, find out what you can do today to increase your job opportunities.

How the pandemic has impacted the job market

This August, a report investigating the UK labour market for April-June and the impact of the coronavirus outbreak was released by parliament. Fortunately, researchers found that employment levels are increasing. However, unemployment is predicted to increase when the Furlough Scheme comes to a close at the end of September 2021. This means that we could see an increase in redundancies.

At the same time, there are gaps in the job market. Lots of industries have experienced skill shortages; this is where job vacancies become hard to fill or difficult to recruit for. According to Luminate, the affected job positions currently include nursing, HR, IT and computing, medical practitioners, business admin support, marketing, financial advisors, and graphic designers.

So, what’s missing? As noted by employers – a lack of specialist skills and training from applicants, particularly professional level and managerial roles.

What is upskilling and how does it benefit me?

Upskilling is all about seizing the opportunity to learn the latest new skills through extra education and training relevant to your desired job role. Being well equipped with the qualifications employers are looking for can really broaden your career possibilities. It can also show you have a great work ethic and are motivated to improve.

Deciding to invest in your future career can be an important and exciting first step to gaining confidence professionally. Whether you would like to retrain in a completely different industry or build on the skills you have now, we’ve listed here some things you’ll need to consider.

      1. Do your research

The pandemic has accelerated the demand for individuals with digital skills. A study by Lloyds in 2019 highlighted that over half of the UK workforce do not have the digital skills that would classify them as being ‘work-ready’ for the current job market. This past year was a testament to our reliance as a society on technology, particularly with navigating online learning and keeping in touch with our friends and family. If you think you could benefit from a course in digital skills to put yourself ahead of the competition, get in touch with us today.

Alternatively, if you are already confident in your digital skills and are looking to explore a different career or skill type, then check out the National Careers Service website. There is information on there to guide you through what it’s like working for a certain sector and what skills and experience you may need for a particular occupation.

For adults aged 19 and over, the National Careers Service offers free and impartial advice if you live within the Thames Valley. If you need further guidance in identifying your skillset and what options may be open for you, or if you just need further help with CVs and interviews, book a careers appointment by email or by calling 0800 612 6008.

Need some more inspiration? Read this blog post on the top 7 reasons why you should retrain in the career of your dreams.

      2. Take part in some career development

When you have decided what step you would like to take next, take a look at what is available to you.

At Activate Learning, we offer programmes that can work around your schedule. Our programmes are available on a full or part-time basis, across our colleges and campuses.

Some of these can be done at home at a time that is convenient for you. We work with local and national employers to teach the skills that they are looking for, so our programmes are highly relevant, practical, and designed for you to enter straight into employment upon completion.

Here are just some of the professional subject areas we offer:

We also have a range of university-level courses available.

     3. Update your CV

So, you’ve invested in yourself and your career. Now it’s time to really sell those skills to an employer! Employers and hiring agencies are scanning hundreds of CVs a day, so don’t miss the opportunity to make yours stand out from the crowd.

Read more CV advice and further tips on increasing your employability here. If you’re taking a course with Activate Learning, we may also be able to help you improve your CV. Get in touch to find out how.

To quote the financial advisor Trandell Tiongson, “the best time to invest was yesterday, the next best time is today, and the worst time is tomorrow.”

So, what are you waiting for? Invest in yourself and your future with an Activate Learning professional programme.