The days when you could find thousands of jobs involving semi-skilled or unskilled work have gone. Automation has replaced human labour and taken always great slices of activity which once involved mundane, routine tasks. Information technology is also beginning to take over in some areas of skilled and professional work, such as quality control and printing, design and administration. Transferable or portable skills – skills which can be adapted and shaped to meet the requirements of several different types of job – are becoming increasingly important.
If your skills have become outdated in a shrinking market, you must be prepared to retrain if you are to succeed in finding new employment. Progress will not stand still simply to accommodate your need for a job, and there is no Divine Right to employment if you are not prepared to put some effort into it.
You may feel you are too old to learn new tricks. The simple truth is that thousands of people are ding exactly this throughout the country, and the opportunities for retaining or catching up with lost education are expanding all the time. Don’t be put off by your age or use this as an excuse: you are never too old to learn – it might just take you a little longer.
Deciding to knuckle down to update or expand your skills is largely a matter of adopting the right attitude, but deciding precisely what skills should be updated or expanded has to be researched very thoroughly, and has a crucial part to play in your campaign to find the right job.
If you know your hopes of getting back into your old type of employment are slim, this is the time to begin putting your future into sharper focus and to start planning with a clearer understanding of what you are trying to achieve. To do this you will need to build on your past.