1.  Get Your Head Back in the Game

Time to switch gears from kids and family towards you and what’s important to you.  Do you want to work full time or part time?  Does it need to be permanent or contract?  What key attributes are important to you?  Make a list and let those guide you as you consider your options.

2.  Manage the Gap on Your Resume 

Once you’ve dusted off that resume, the next step is to make it speak to the type of job your interested in.  Include your experience at home in a way that demonstrates new skills, knowledge or experiences gained.  It doesn’t have to be paid experience to be worthy.  Write about any achievements and successes that relate to the role you’re interested in.

3.  Create a Cover Letter that Gets to the Point

Make sure to address your time away from work in a few sentences and then move on to state your commitment towards the role you’re applying for.  Then demonstrate that you’ve done your homework by expressing your interest in the company and why the role excites you. Bonus marks if you can address it to the hiring manager or recruiter involved in the search!

4.  Reconnect

Look up your colleagues and co-workers from past jobs and start to reconnect.  Ask them about the company’s latest news and what’s exciting for them at the moment. If you haven’t decided what you want to do, ask your friends and people from your network for ‘informational interviews’.  Talk to them about what they do – people love to talk about themselves – it might inspire you or help you decide what you don’t want to do!

5.  Fill Your Professional Gap

If you want recent experience on your resume look for volunteer opportunities, short term contracts or freelance roles. Also, connecting with a temporary employment agency is a great way to get experience in the specific area of your interest, while getting a feel for different industries and organizations.