How to Score Your First Job in a New Industry

February 29, 2016

How to Score Your First Job in a New Industry

Lots of people return to school to learn new skills and explore new industries. Luckily it’s a good time to be in healthcare. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the healthcare industry added 37,000 jobs in January 2016, including 24,000 jobs in hospitals.

But if you’ve recently graduated from a healthcare-focused program, you might find yourself with great skills but not a lot of related experience. So how do you convince hiring managers that you’re the one they’ve been looking for?

Here are some tips for finding your first job after changing industries.

Learn the new industry

If you’ve been through an allied health program, then hopefully you’ve learned a lot about your new field. It’s still a good idea to research the current job market. What skills and trends matter to hiring managers right now? Try reading through job descriptions for positions in your field. You can also study the websites of potential employers, and do a simple Google search of the industry.

Channel this knowledge into your interview. Use industry-specific terms and talk about any in-demand skills you have.  Your research will help give you confidence, and speaking knowledgeably can help you come across as professional and ready to take on a new challenge.

Build your résumé

Your program gave you knowledge, which is great. But it’s still a good idea to fill out your resume even more.

Look for volunteer opportunities and internships/externships with places like American Red Cross, the American Dental Association and World Health Organization.

You probably won’t get paid for the work, but you’ll add to your résumé and hopefully stand out to hiring managers. And you could help people in a meaningful way—which is great too!

Find ways to tie in your previous work experience

It’s important to build connections between your previous work and the positions you’re interviewing for now.

Even if the positions aren’t the same, you can still talk about your soft skills. For example, if you worked as an office aid before and you’re trying to get into the healthcare administrative field, you can talk about your organizational skills and your experience in a fast-paced office.

Make sure that your résumé also reflects this goal. Try to avoid including unrelated experience or your entire work history. Just include the positions you can use during the interview.

Switching into a new field isn’t always easy, but finding a new and fulfilling career is worth the work. If you’ve already successfully landed a job in a new industry, what tips have worked for you? Share them in the comments!

Statistics accurate as of February 29, 2016

About the Author

is an award-winning writer and journalist with years of experience within the healthcare and education space. She has contributed to dozens of periodicals, publications and blogs, and she specializes in providing well-researched and thought-provoking content.

The views expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Ultimate Medical Academy.

The UMA Blog covers information and advice for employers and workers at the intersection of healthcare, education and employment. Our contributors are intimately familiar with a wide range of subjects covering professional development, career advancement, workplace politics, healthcare industry specific topics, personal finance, education and so much more. Learn what you need to get ahead and stay ahead.

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