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Five tips on finding the right job for new parents

If you are reading this, congratulations! Being a parent is perhaps one of the formative experiences in any person’s life, however of course with its ups also comes some challenges.

Striking a balance between employment and parenting can be tricky, to say the least. The expectation to make sure both the child and the work are cared for properly — let alone having to temporarily put a hold on your career. In a nutshell, getting back on the job track for a new parent can be challenging. And, while some things are just out of our control, there are very simple tips that will certainly make it easier and less worrying.

Do the Homework

You may have had to not work for a couple of months or even years after having your baby, but that can still be a considerable amount of time in terms of career prospects. Job offers come and go, and the skills required can change accordingly. Therefore, before you start looking for a job, take a look at your past career(s). Do you still feel like working in the same field after becoming a parent or has something changed about yourself? These are simple but very important questions that might take some time to answer.

And, don’t forget to revise your CV—there’s at least one important event in your life that you might still have to add to it!

Decide What Jobs Suit You

As a new parent, one of the more important factors to look out for will be job flexibility.

It is important that you are capable of both managing your responsibilities and taking care of your child. Thankfully, with the pandemic not showing any signs of subsiding, working from home and part-time working is even more common than before.

Consider contract or freelance jobs, giving you even more freedom in terms of the work schedule, is a suitable option for new parents, too.

Get to Know Prospective Employers

Even if you feel like you’ve come across the job offer, there’s something you should keep in mind: How does the employer treat working parents?

It’s not necessarily the matter of unequal opportunities; the company culture may have to require you to be always in touch, or there might be sudden (and uncompromising) changes to the work schedule.

The recommendation is to do some research on the employer company so that you get to know if you will manage both work and home beforehand.

Prepare for a Job Interview

While being interviewed for a new job will surely be different each time, as a new parent you could expect the employer to ask you about your career gap. Don’t be apologetic; an honest answer, such as “I decided to leave my last job to become a parent, and now I’m ready to work” is the best option here. Get prepared for the conversation and think about dos and don’t of the interview.

Aside from that, there’s not that much different from any other job interview. Know what to say about your previous experience and strengths and weaknesses, and how to answer so-called situational questions.

Last but not least: Prepare your own questions. Often missed out on, this part of a job interview will help you clear doubts (if any) about whether you’ll fit in and feel comfortable working. Your list of questions may include something from the following:

  • What could you tell me about the company’s corporate culture?
  • What is your management style here?
  • Are you hesitant about hiring me and if so why?
  • How do you treat employees that work from home?

Believe in Yourself

Finally, be confident about yourself. It’s never late to look for new opportunities and even start your career path over. Whether a new parent or not, if you have the skills and qualifications, you’ll be able to find your dream job and the employer that you’re comfortable with.

February 04, 2022 by Sam Humble-Smith

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