A returnship programme works like an internship and acts as a bridge to get back to work. Companies recruit on a temporary basis, test your skills and train you. They then absorb you if you perform well. You are likely to be paid for the projects you work on, but do not expect the compensation to match industry standards. “Nearly 70-80% of the candidates get an offer after completion of their training with the company,” says Jyotika Singh, founder and facilitator, relauncHER, a platform that helps bring women back to work after a career break. Most big companies, including Tata, GE, Cisco, HCL Tech, Dell, IBM, L’Oreal and Maybelline, have returnship programmes only for women. “This is because over 90% of the resumes with career breaks are of women,” says Sairee Chachal, founder, SHEROES, a mentorship and job search platform for women professionals.
Finding a job is tougher when you have taken a break and lost touch with the right people in the industry. Here, return-to-work boot camps, like the ones by SHEROES and relauncHER, help. They arrange for industry meet-ups and create forums for networking with the HR heads and industry leaders, who can mentor you to make the process smoother. “Returning to work requires realigning priorities with reality and a structured approach, and an ecosystem helps one build better momentum,” says Chachal. However, these forums do not guarantee recruitment. “Understand that you might have to start at a level lower than the one you had earlier, and you should be ready to explore new avenues,” says Singh.
You may not realise it, but volunteering can help you find employment, especially if you are trying to learn new skills or shift to a new sector. An employer values an on-job experience more, so rather than doing a course to upgrade your knowledge, you can give your services for free to fill the gap in your resume. You can also try overseas volunteering. The selection criteria are quite simple. The companies might ask only for a graduation degree in the area of work, or for an interview. Most of these programmes also give you a stipend. Organisations like iVolunteer Overseas can help you find such opportunities in areas like health, disability, education, livelihood and community empowerment.
There are many part-time options for professionals with prior experience. You can be a freelancer or choose a flexi-time option can work in an office or from your home. These options look for experience in business development, recruiting, programming, teaching, marketing communication and content development. People with technical skills will also find ample opportunities. If your profile or skill-set doesn’t match these, try applying to a start-up.
Starting a business is gratifying, but has its challenges, more so if you are returning to the market after a break. A franchise or an affiliate programme, where you become a part of a partner network, can be a safer route. “It allows you to de-risk the operation with established business models and a support structure provided by partners,” says Singh. You receive training to run the business along with support material. One of the constraints here is initial investment. Even a low-cost franchise, as the one from SmartQ Education Solutions, a Mumbai-based venture in afterschool educational activities and workshops, requires a one-time, non-refundable, initial partner fee of 40,000 and 2,000 for the joining kit. The renewal fee is 10,000 annually.
Source : The Times of India
Date : 12/5/2014