I recently left my job to retire, but have changed my mind. How can I get back into work?


It is not uncommon for someone to retire and then not too far down the line decide that they want to back track. Some people just can’t settle down to a quiet life of retirement, some have an urge or a need to earn more money or some have a burning idea to get off the ground. And while it may be daunting to re-enter the world of work, it is extremely possible.

Statistics suggest that the recession has had a significant impact on employment rates for over-50s, with many finding themselves unemployed for a significant amount of time. Organisations tend to want to employ younger candidates, who they believe can bring fresh, new ways of thinking and work for more years. However, this certainly isn’t always the case and if you approach the situation with a positive mindset, you can use your extra years of experience to your advantage.

The first challenge to overcome is updating your CV. If you were in your previous job for a while it could be a significant amount of time since you last did this, which means there is a lot to update. For example, you need to ascertain exactly which skills and experience will be valued by current employers. It may be worth taking the time to speak to a few organizations to find out the sort of skills that they look for in a new employee, such as computer skills or experience of implementing a recently published standard.

You can then adapt your CV to demonstrate these skills or seek a training course that will allow you bring your experience up to date. Technology is certainly a consideration when returning to work during retirement. Technology moves quickly so even if you’ve only been out of work a few years it’s likely it has developed significantly. Make sure that you are aware of any developments in your industry and, as mentioned before, either take a training course or highlight on your CV your interest and enthusiasm to learn about new technologies.

The Directgov website contains a wealth of information about training courses for over 50s. When applying for jobs, it may be worth taking a look at the organisation’s current client-base. This may give you an idea about whether it is an environment to which you are suited. For example, age could count in your favour if their clients and customers are of a similar age to you.

Finally, there is always the option of becoming a self-employed consultant. There is no reason you have to be employed by an organisation and setting up your own business could well be the answer. After all, organizations may well be more inclined to purchase the services of a quality manager with years of experience than a younger consultant with less.


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