Preparing to Return to Work After a Career Break


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There are many reasons why someone may have spent an extended period of time out of the workplace. Some will be through choice for example, travelling or maternity/paternity leave, other reasons may be due to circumstances such as redundancy or prolonged sickness. What ever the reason, getting back to work can feel daunting.

We’ve put together our tips on how best to prepare your return to work following a significant time off.

Finding work

If you’ve been made redundant or have left your job to travel, you’ll now find yourself in a situation where you need to find a new job. Whether you’ve been out of work for weeks or months, the idea of kick starting your career again might seem like a scary prospect.

The first step is to identify what kind of roles you want to apply for and then update your CV with the appropriate skills required for these roles. Your highest chances of success in the first stage is to tailor your CV to each role you are applying for.

Job hunting can be a stressful without the right information and support therefore you might enlist the knowledge of a recruiter. We’ve been recruiting for Automotive businesses across the whole of the UK for over 16 years so our team are pretty knowledgeable to say the least! You can find out more about the benefits of using a recruiter here.

Being out of work can have an impact on your self confidence which can have a knock on effect to how you perform in interviews or even on the types of jobs you apply for. It’s important to rebuild that confidence so that you’re in the strongest position to succeed in your job search. Define your strengths and remind yourself of these regularly and engage with the people around you to find out about the current job market. It can also be good experience to attend networking events as you’ll have the opportunity to widen your network and speak to other professionals.


Returning to work

If you are returning to work after maternity, paternity or sick leave, it is most likely that you’ll be going back to the job you left within the same workplace. This can also feel daunting as lots will have changed since you were there, and you may feel out of touch with the business.

The key thing to remember here is you have employee rights and your employer is legally obligated to support you in your return to work. This could mean that you have a phased return, working less hours than you did before or that you have someone within the business who is assigned to help you reintegrate.

Give yourself the best opportunity of success by planning ahead where possible and being completely honest with yourself and your employer throughout the transition of return. No one will expect you to hit the ground running so don’t put that pressure on yourself. Instead focus on the positives; you’re back doing what you’re good at, you’re integrating with your team and you’re managing to do so on top of additional challenges!


Whether you are returning to your current employer or starting a new role as discussed in the first point, the important thing is to give yourself time to settle. Getting back to work after a break is a big adjustment for anyone but have confidence in yourself that you can make it work.

If you’re looking for a new role, we have over 1,400 live Automotive Vacancies across the whole of the UK ranging from Vehicle Technician Jobs to Sales Manager Jobs.

Our team of friendly and professional recruitment specialists are waiting to speak to you so get in touch today!