Feeling uncertain about entering the workforce or looking for a change in career? Take a look at resources that are available to help you take the next step in your career.
When starting out on your career path or changing your career direction, the way might not seem clear, and often it's not - but that's the exciting part! Your career journey will take you to unexpected destinations and in surprising directions, and in doing so, reveal your own strengths, areas of interest and employment preferences. If you're feeling uncertain or lacking focus at any point in your career, it might be time to reassess the direction in which you're heading.
So, what to do? Follow our career planning advice for tips on picking a career path:
Consider your career goals
Some of the best tools for career planning are in your own head. Experts agree that with clear career goals and direction, you'll enjoy much greater job satisfaction. It's never too early to begin formulating career goals; if you're in your last years of high school or your first years of tertiary study, consider where you want your training to eventually take you.
- Your ideal job role - what is important to you in your work? Realistically, what are the steps you'll need to take to get there? What training, experience and skills will you need?
- Companies or organisations you would like to work for - are there places you admire for their reputation or achievements in their chosen field?
- Possible locations - have you considered a change of location? Places outside your hometown may offer greater opportunities within your chosen field; don't let this stop you from pursuing your career goals.
- Your strengths and interests - try to align your career goals with the things you are good at and the things you enjoy. It's no coincidence that we most often enjoy the fields in which our abilities lie.
Consult an online career resource
For ideas and inspiration, visit these New Zealand career planning resources online:
- Career Services - a website containing a database of tertiary courses, as well as industry and job market information, training providers, scholarships and industry contacts.
- KiwiQuals - this site features information on every registered qualification in New Zealand, available through accredited education providers and training organisations.
- University Career Centres - all major universities and education providers will offer the services of a career counsellor who can give you words of wisdom to guide you on your career path.
- Pathfinder - a career resource that lets you fill in online questionnaires about your skills and interests, then explore career suggestions and find study options.
Research Your Career Options
One of the problems you may face when deciding on a career path is finding what choices there are! This is where career research comes into the equation. To find out about the myriad of career choices and job titles, try:
- Talking with friends and family about their career path - what training they initially completed, what jobs they have had and where they are now. The more you do this, the more you'll find that the road to the perfect job is sometimes along an unexpected route.
- Visiting a career consultant - meet with a professional career advisor to get an objective take on your personality and skill profile. They can offer practical guidance when making training or career change decisions.
- Going to a university career centre - these resource centres provide a great deal of information and advice on careers, training, study and scholarship options, and how to successfully apply for a job. Even if you're not currently studying, approach them to talk about prospective study options and career paths available through the university. Online, you can log in to CareerHub to get career guidance and advice.
Browse job advertisements
To get an idea of the current job market and find jobs that might appeal to you, look at job vacancy listings online:
- New Zealand Government jobs - find work opportunities in the state sector, covering accounting, administration, engineering, communications, education, policy, health, social welfare, computing and many more industries.
- SEEK - one of the largest job listing sites in New Zealand, offering opportunities in all industries, including part time and full time work.
- Student Job Search - a great place to find work while you study or during the summer holidays. There are skilled jobs too, which may be able to help you towards a career choice: data entry, market research projects, web design and consulting are just a few on offer.
Looking for more information? Find career planning resources in the NZS.com directory.