Finding Your Direction
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COVID-19: Why Good Careers Education is More Vital than Ever

15 September 2021
Reading Time: 4 minutes

We know you don’t need us to be dropping the dreaded C word into your lives right now; it definitely feels like something we can’t get away from!

As we keep looking ahead, it’s clear the pandemic has had and will continue to have a significant impact on everyone, young people in particular. From mass school disruption to the burnout of studying and learning from home, over to the impact on exams – not to mention not getting to hang out with your mates.

It’s tough! And it might feel tougher yet to even begin thinking about careers and career planning.

It might seem like a fruitless endeavour, but we say now is an even more vital time to tap into the amazing digital resources at your fingertips and keep a focus on your future pathway.

How COVID-19 is Affecting Schools & Students

Just over a  year into the pandemic, half the world’s students are still affected by partial or full school closures. According to reports from UNESCO, over 100 million additional young people will fall below the minimum proficiency level in reading as a result of the current crisis.

Every level of education has been impacted, including high schools and universities. Reports are finding that students in transitions, either into higher education or from full-time education into work, have struggled the most.

While the economy has experienced huge disruptions, it’s not all doom and gloom. Some sectors have actually experienced growth through the pandemic. New opportunities are opening up, such as within digital careers, healthcare and logistics.

Reports are already citing that the biggest in-demand skills post-pandemic will be:

  • Resilience
  • Adaptability
  • Agility

The good news? After surviving through more than a year of the biggest global disruption you’re likely to face in your lifetime, you can safely tick all three of those skills and get them on your resume!

Why Career Planning is Vital

Having one ultimate career goal in mind is excellent, but if the pandemic has taught us anything, being adaptable will be a must in the future.

We’re big advocates for having a Plan A and a Plan B (maybe even a Plan C!) up your sleeve when you begin career planning.

Effective career planning allows you to do that. Essentially, career planning involves spending time reflecting on:

  • Your key skills
  • Your personal strengths
  • Your passions and interests

And then translating them across different career industries to see where they might be a good fit. From there, you can begin to look at the nitty-gritty:

  • Qualifications required
  • Entry pathways (vocational, tertiary or apprenticeships)
  • Experience required
  • Industry growth in the next five years

Once you have all this information, you can pick the top two or three career industries that you’re most interested in. We’d recommend ranking them in preference, but you don’t have to do that if you don’t feel you have enough information to decide just yet. What matters is knowing the core areas you’d like to learn more about.

In a post-pandemic world, you’ll want to make sure you’re aware of how specific industries have been impacted and what that means for jobs. For example, we know that hospitality and tourism have been hit the hardest, but these are key industries that will likely see ongoing recovery in the years to come.

Career planning in this way can help you feel back in control of your future. It doesn’t have to be concrete, and you can change things up as you learn more, and your ideas change, but some form of pathway planning can definitely help you stay on track and find the right people and resources to keep you moving forward.

Get Access to the Resources You Need

Surveys with students have indicated that they want – and need – easy access to key information that will help them make informed decisions about their next career steps during these unprecedented times.

Explore Careers has always been at the forefront of offering up-to-date, accessible information for young people no matter what stage you’re at in these decisions, and we’ll keep striving to do more.

Digital resources are vital for successful career education during these times, which is why you can get free access on our site to:

  1. Our Career Quiz: The ultimate starting point for your career planning! This quiz won’t take up too much of your time but will quickly highlight the key industries that match you and your personal strengths and skills.
  2. Industry Profiles: Once you know the industries that are a good match for you, you’ll want to dive deep into learning more about them! Our brand new industry profiles are just the place to start. You’ll find key job roles, expected salaries, qualifications required, entry pathways and more!
  3. Employer Profiles: Start matching the industries you’re interested in with the biggest employers in each sector, and you’ll be well on your way! In our employer section, you can get access to key employer profiles, entry pathways and jobs!
  4. Blogs and Resources: Start putting it all together with our expert guidance on the key things we know young people want to know about to get started. From writing a resume, acing the interview and understanding your career journey. You can find the right advice for you right here.

At Explore Careers, we’re with you every step of the way, and over the next year, we’ll be listening and learning what YOU need to find success in a post-pandemic world.

Need a resource or information about careers you can’t find on our website? Let us know, and we’ll get on it for you. We’re all in this together.


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