For at least 40 million Americans who are now unemployed, the COVID-19 pandemic has made everything come to a screeching halt before turning the world upside down. To tide things over, those who are still employed but have received salary cuts have already started looking best deals in payday loans. The redundancies have brought so many people back to zero, wondering how they would be able to move forward. This situation is very hard, especially for those already in their 40s, with a mortgage to pay, and kids to send to school. However, this situation could also be an opportunity for them to either start their own business or consider starting a home-based job.
Starting one’s own business is always a worthy goal, but some do not have the financial capital, the time, and the concept to embark on such a labor-intensive task. Most would rather get another job or be trained to enter another industry or line of work. For those who prefer to work full-time yet enjoy some time freedom, here are five suggestions to consider:
Take Stock of Your Expertise and Background
Those who are in-between jobs would do well to first take stock of their expertise and background. This is critically important for job hunters who are already above 40 years old. Knowing one’s capabilities will help frame the strategy for once again becoming gainfully employed. The transition to home-based employment, however, is enticing for the 40s age group since it would allow them to finally enjoy more time at home while still being able to generate income.
For most people, their 20s and 30s were all about career development and tenure. Those who have passed the early to mid-years of their career often look for something different or, at the very least, a job that pays well but still allows them to pursue other interests outside the workplace. This is very much the attraction of a home-based occupation. While younger workers are more adept with technology and in tune with current trends, older employees have had more experience and have gained transferable knowledge and skills from their previous occupations. Knowing one’s particular strengths and areas for improvement will allow prospects to correctly position themselves in a competitive job market.
Among the immediate concerns of people who are shifting careers or will be working online for the very first time is their age. In 2018, based on data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median age for employed men and women was 41.9, showing that those in their 40s can still be gainfully employed. In 1998, the median age for employees was lower at 38 for both men and women. By 2028, the employee median age is expected to rise slightly to 42 years old. Clearly, being in the 40s is not too late to start anew in another field or another mode of employment such as telecommuting.
Know the Opportunities Home-Based Industry
After knowing what strengths to capitalize on, it is best to check out opportunities for home-based careers. Right now, there are many vacancies in the industry of online sales and marketing, publishing, and other service-focused areas provided by certain jobs like being a virtual assistant, data entry specialist, or translator. More technical work that can be done at home are jobs for medical transcriptionists, content writers and editors, and social media managers or curators. Many companies in need of these jobs actually provide pre-entry training and development programs so that even those without the related education and background can transition properly into the role.
Invest in Training
Given the wide range of industries and new, emerging job positions, it will always be good to invest in training. While waiting for the next job opportunity or offer, it is best to use time and resources to enroll online or at a nearby college to gain new competencies and certifications.
For example, data science is a new field that will require more professionals and practitioners in the years to come. This is a good area of study for those who are interested in computers and data analysis. Continuous learning will always open the doors for new opportunities, regardless of age, sex, or educational and career background.
Open Social Media Accounts Useful for Home-based Job Hunting
The next logical step is to make it easier for recruiters to find you. Open a free account on LinkedIn, Jobstreet, and other similar websites where you can upload your profile, browse for jobs, and have head hunters preview your curriculum vitae and other related information.
Ask Advice from Friends Who Are Active in a Home-based Job or Profession
Lastly, look at your inner circle and group of trusted friends. Ask them for advice on shifting careers or trying out a home-based job, especially if they have had experience in it. For sure, there are many advantages to working from home such as being free from the stress of road traffic and being able to look after one’s children while being at work at the same time. There are also disadvantages like having only limited contact with office friends and distractions at home.
Indeed, despite setbacks in the economy, people still have many options to find meaningful and well-paying professions that can be done online and at home.