Your 5-step framework for finding a new career

It can be easy for you to get overwhelmed and struggle to know where to begin, with a job search outside of academia. To help you get started and stay on track, here’s a 5-step framework to guide and support your efforts:

  • Step 1: Identify your transferable skills – knowing what you can do
  • Step 2: Choose your profession – focusing your job search
  • Step 3: Get the right experience – proving that you can do it
  • Step 4: Create your professional brand – communicating your value
  • Step 5: Tell a great story – shining in interviews

For each of these steps, I’ve written detailed articles exploring the activities you need to undertake, and the outputs you need to create. I’ve also written about the whole process of getting started with your job search, for instance, learning about the non-academic job market and adopting the right mindset for changing careers.

You can work through these articles according to which step of your job search you’re at, or dip in and out, depending upon where you feel you need support.

Getting started

Why you need to start thinking about a career outside academia – today!

Preparing for life after the PhD: retrain your brain

A PhD is a fixed-term job, not a passport to a professorship

The majority of PhDs are switching into careers outside academia

Post-PhD careers: you can have your cake *and* eat it

Boost your job prospects by attending campus careers events for PhDs

Planning a career change after your PhD? About time …

You can’t climb a ladder that’s run out of rungs

How to build up your career support network during your PhD

Deciding when to quit the academic job search, part 1

Deciding when to quit the academic job search, Part 2

The caterpillar and the inquisitive bug (a story)

Step 1: Identify your transferable skills

Discover the 20+ transferable skills that make PhDs totally employable

‘What jobs can I do with my degree?’ – a practical exercise (for graduates)

How I use the skills acquired from my PhD, in my current job

What do you want to be when you grow up?!

A PhD is a qualification, not an identity

Step 2: Choose your profession

Your job options after a PhD – in a diagram

Life after the PhD: 8 inspiring post-PhD interview websites

Free Resource Guide: 10 career websites every PhD should visit

Take control of your career by switching into a job outside of academia

The most underrated career option for PhDs, by Courtney Danyel

What jobs does a PhD qualify me for?

Interview with Lisa Qian, Data Scientist at Airbnb

Getting a job in Finance, after your PhD

Image Consulting – why it’s a rewarding career option for you, by Suman Agarwal

‘Alternative Career Pathways After Your PhD’ – live Q&A hosted by Chris

How to search for your ideal job outside academia

How to research your target job sector

How to find jobs advertised at PhDs

How to get help and advice when applying for jobs outside academia

‘But I don’t really know what I want to do!’

Deciding who to work for after the PhD

Project Management as a career path for PhDs

How PhD holders can find and secure an IT job – interview

Career Opportunities in the Esports Industry [Infographic]

Step 3: Get the right experience

5 work experience options for PhDs and post-docs

How to gain work experience for jobs outside academia

From PhD to PMP: training and support in Ireland, by Meadhbh Hand

5 ways an MBA can improve your employability, by Adam Maidment

Step 4: Create your professional brand

Applying for jobs outside academia – from PhD to fellow professional

How to translate your skills into language employers can understand

Join a professional association before leaving academia

Sorry to turn you down, but you’re overqualified

How to convert a scientific CV into a business CV, by Seán Mac Fhearraigh

How to get a job using LinkedIn, by Seán Mac Fhearraigh

Job hunting in the digital age, by Vera Marie Reed

Step 5: Tell a great story

How to tell a great story about your transition out of academia

How to introduce yourself to employers outside academia, after your PhD

How to recognise and overcome the failure story after your PhD

Feeling like a failure? 4 strategies for beating the post-PhD blues

A PhD is an achievement, not an activity

Book Reviews

How To Find A Career With Your Humanities Degree in 126 days

2 e-books to help you finish your PhD

Overcoming Perfectionism – A Self-Help Guide

The Professor Is In

Succeeding Outside the Academy

Designing your Life

All posts are by Chris Humphrey, unless other attributed.

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