What Kind of Information Is Important When Considering a Career Change?

The current economic climate combined with a changing job marketplace has caused many people to begin thinking about a change of careers. It is important that those professionals interested in a few fields have all the facts before making a life-changing decision.

Resources for Career Research

If you're considering a career change, you probably want to consider all your options and get a sense of what's required to enter a new field, its prospects and the duties you might perform. Here are three different venues where you can find out more about new careers:

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

A department within the U.S. Department of Labor, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.gov) collects and analyzes job and employment data. It releases its findings to agencies in the Federal government, as well as to citizens. The Bureau's Occupational Handbook outlines thousands of potential jobs according to:

  • Training, education and licensure requirements
  • Earnings
  • Expected job prospects
  • Job duties
  • Working conditions
  • Related occupations

The handbook can also be utilized to learn job search tips, as well as job trends in every state of the union. You can also search subjects such as worker safety, the consumer and producer price indexes and national spending habits.

National Association of Colleges and Employers

Since 1956, the National Association of Colleges and Employers (www.naceweb.org) has been dedicated to employing the college educated. Both employers and potential employees are given the tools to succeed, using connections tools such as mentoring and a discussion board. There are also research resources on salaries and job outlook, and a knowledge center that focuses on subjects such as:

  • Career services
  • College recruiting
  • Co-op programs
  • Publications

The organization holds a number of employer seminars, educational programs and career fairs. There is a fee to join - $425 annually for two individuals is the lowest tier available as of January 2014.

USA Jobs

The official job site for the Federal government, USA Jobs (www.usajobs.gov) gives you the opportunity to search over 31,000 jobs throughout the country. The first step to using the site allows to you build and store up to five different resumes. You can save and automate your job searches for subsequent visits to the site. There are three ways that you can browse the site for jobs:

  • By agency
  • By state
  • By occupation

There is a separate listing for jobs made available through the National Recovery Act. In the information section, you can check out the Career Interest Center, which matches job interests to positions and helps you explore other options based on your skills. There are special opportunities listed for veterans, students and the disabled. You can also look at the site's research on hiring trends.

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