By Christa Peters, Senior Manager, Instructional Design & Knowledge Management | 05/20/2021 |

This month, the topic for our blogs was “A Next Era”.

What I am writing about is not “new”, however, the last year has definitely put a fine point on this topic: career change and skills upgrading. 30 million Americans lost jobs because of coronavirus shutdowns, and millions of those jobs and industries aren’t coming back.

According to the US Department of Labor Statistics, the average number of jobs held in a lifetime is 12.3. What’s more fascinating, is that individuals will change careers 5-7 times in their lifetime!

Maybe you’re thinking: I have an undergraduate degree, a master’s or even a PhD. I will be fine. That may be true, but keep in mind that skills obtained in a degree or certification have a half-life of five years. This means that much of what you learned 10 years ago is obsolete and half of what you learned 5 years ago is irrelevant.

I know – so far this article is a pretty big downer.

Here’s the great news: At Percepta, you don’t need to change companies to change roles or careers. Percepta has roles in finance, HR, data analysis, operations, software designers, training and ISD, leadership roles, and many more! Also, new career paths will be created as we grow.

I have had plenty of conversations in my short tenure here with individuals wanting to grow their careers and/or move into new roles. Here is some of the advice I shared with them:

  1. Have a conversation with someone who holds a role that interests you. Ask them questions about their educational background, skills and career trajectory.
  2. Work with your supervisor to shadow an individual in a role that is of interest to you.
  3. Educate yourself on the skills needed: start small, read a book, listen to a podcast, or take an online course about a particular career topic. If you’re still interested, investigate certificates, certifications, diplomas and degrees. Always keep learning and upgrading your skills!
  4. Investigate the dollars available to you as part as part of Percepta’s professional development funds.
  5. Read postings for roles you want, and note skills and certifications required. Help that guide your career planning.
  6. Ask a recruiter or supervisor to review your resume, cover letter and help prepare for interviews.