How can I manage my job and my career?


How to take that plunge and actually make that career-defining switch

How to make that career-defining switch.

You may have spent a good few years on your job and gotten quite good at it. But have you ever stopped to wonder if this is indeed what you want to do? Or whether it's time to explore new horizons?

Remember when Chandler from Friends decided he had enough of statistical analysis and data reconfiguration, and decided to make a mid-career switch to advertising?

Chandler from Friends wanted to switch to a career in advertising.

Picture: Pinterest

Are you thinking of pulling a Chandler? Maybe you’ve always wanted to see your name in the credits of the next Star Wars film. Perhaps you’ve always been interested in caring for the elderly, or educating children in their early formative years. Career switches are now quite common, and the Professional Conversion Programme (PCP) is a good place to get yourself started on a new career path.

This Workforce Singapore's (WSG) Adapt and Grow initiative offers Place and Train (PnT) programmes which allow trainees to be hired by a participating employer before commencing training to acquire the skills required for the job.

These programmes also encourage participating employers to be more open to hire mid-career professionals such as yourself, recognise your current skills, and equip you with the necessary skills to prepare you for new roles. They are helped by the WSG which provides monthly salary support and course fee subsidies for staff they hire through PnT programmes.

Enter the PCP                                    

The PCP helps Singaporean PMETs who want to make a career switch upgrade and re-skill themselves, and obtain the necessary knowledge for their new careers. It provides customised training for very specific roles in identified sectors, and includes a work attachment to help them acquire real experience in the field. These PCPs also lower the employers’ cost of hiring mid-career entrants and re-skilling them for new jobs by providing salary support during the training period. Salary support given under the PCP can be as high as 70% of salaries, and are capped at $2,000 per month.

This enhances your employability and propels you to take on new jobs with added confidence.

Which industry should you move to?

Growth sectors are your best bet, given that these are quite robust industries. The PCP is available in these sectors:

  1. Creative Industries 
  2. Early Childhood Care and Education
  3. Food Services
  4. Healthcare
  5. Infocomm Technology
  6. Intellectual Property
  7. International Trade
  8. Manufacturing
  9. Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, Exhibitions (MICE) and Events
  10. Retail
  11. Social Services

When to make the switch?

Career moves can seem like a drastic change, especially for those who have been in their industries for some time. However, a switch could be the boost you need to reach the next level in your career, more so when there are many ways through which you can get a new, better job while further developing your skills.

If you’re still unsure about a career change, head to a career centre nearby and talk to consultants who can advise you on your options.

No overnight occurrence

Career changes don’t happen overnight. Completing a switch can take some time and may depend on the type of industry you’re aspiring for.

It can be overwhelming and even intimidating, amidst concerns of financial uncertainties, family resistance or fear of failure. Nevertheless, the biggest rewards sometimes come from giving yourself a chance.

Making the most of these schemes and achieving a smooth transition to a new industry is not impossible. Your willingness to learn, coupled with the need for manpower in these sectors, are key factors to help you take that first all-too-important step on a new career path.  

To find out more, visit the WSG website for more information on the PCP.