Need a career plan? CV Library have some great advice for you…
Published: 23rd May 2018 | Author: Kate Howes
Here at Horizon we work with several leading job board providers, but especially closely with CV Library, the UK’s fastest growing job site. They have a team of industry experts and know their stuff! When we were asked if they could write a news article for us, we knew they’d have some good advice to share, so naturally said yes! Here’s their advice on how to create a structured career plan…
How to create a structured career plan
In order to secure the job that you want, it’s important to put together a structured career plan. After all, how you can successfully reach your goal, if you don’t know how you’re going to get there? However, many job hunters fail to take this approach, instead firing off hundreds of applications, yielding little relevant results.
Below, we’ll explain how you can create a structured career plan, in order to secure the job that you want.
Consider your options
Firstly, you need to think about the options that are available to you. Are you looking to create a structured career plan that will help you to grow within the company that you’re currently working in? Or are you creating a plan which means you can eventually leave the company and find work in a company you’re more passionate about.
Start by creating a list of what you want from your career. This could be anything from achieving a great work-life balance, to becoming a specialist in a certain area. Alternatively, it might be taking on management responsibility, or moving to a completely new industry.
Know what role you want to develop in
After you’ve considered your options, you should start to gain a clearer idea of what role you want to develop in. Having an end goal in mind is extremely important, helping to give you a clear focus.
Make sure you do your research on this position. After all, you wouldn’t want to end up in a job that you actually disliked. Carefully consider each factor: will you need to invest in gaining new qualifications? Is the job market in a stable condition for this? Would you need to take a pay cut?
Understand the skills you need to gain
Once you’ve done your research, you’ll be able to build up an understanding of the key skills you’ll need to work on to achieve your goals. It might be that you’re already proficient in many of these areas, but need to spend time with a more seasoned colleague to develop your knowledge. Alternatively, you might want to take a handy online course.
If you’re looking to progress to a more senior role, you’ll probably need to work on your soft skills. This includes written and verbal communication as well as people management.
Set SMART goals
If you’ve identified your options and have a clear understanding of what skills you need to get there, it’s now time to put together an action plan. Setting goals is extremely important and these should be SMART: specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time bound. Within these, you might have some shorter term goals (for example, to complete a certain qualification in the next 12 months to boost your CV) and longer term goals (to secure a management position within the next three years).
When setting these goals, it’s vital that you think realistically. You don’t want to expect too much of yourself and fall at the first hurdle. Make note of the specific actions that you’re going to take and stay on top of these. As you complete them, you can tick them off, giving you a great sense of achievement.
It’s now time to put your ideas into action. With careful research and planning, you should be in a great position to use your career plan as a basis of your development. If in doubt, talk to someone that is working in a similar position, or a friend or family member. If you’re developing in your own company, work closely with your manage to create goals and a plan for success.
Over all, putting together a structured career plan is extremely important. Whether this is for your development in your current company, or to meet your goals outside of the organisation or industry, having an end goal in mind and knowing what you need to do to get there will give you a better chance of reaching your long term and short-term goals.
CV-Library is the UK’s leading independent job board, advertising a range of roles across the country, from Edinburgh, to London. It also owns an array of other career sites, including Engineering Jobs.