How To Change Job Fields

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Changing jobs within the same field provides enough challenges as you transfer benefits, handle a possible move, and get used to new coworkers and office policies.

However, if you want to change the job fields, you'll face a larger challenge. The job experience and training you currently have can help you, but you may need to do more to transition into a different career field. Learn what to do when you decide to change career fields.

Key Takeaways

  • When considering a career change, take time to identify the field you want to switch to.
  • Research the education and level of training you'll need for the role you want.
  • Reach out to your network to find job openings and new opportunities.
  • Update your resume to include keywords that may be relevant to employers in the field you want to move to.
  • Prepare yourself for a new workplace culture; your next job may require different hours, expect a lower or higher level of communication, and may provide better or worse benefits.

Decide Your Next Move

First, you should decide your next move, field-wise. Some fields such as the medical profession, accounting, or information technology may require specific technical training for you to complete before you can begin working.

The career field you choose will determine how easy or difficult it is to transition into your new job. Before you make the commitment to transition, you should be sure that is something you really want to do. Talk to people who have been working in that field for several years. Speak with people at several different companies, so you can get a broad view of what the industry is really like.


Think about how the pay and time commitment for the new positions will affect your lifestyle. This may affect your decision to switch career fields.

Determine the Training Needed

After you have decided on the field and researched it to make sure it is right for you, you'll need to get the training necessary to make the switch. You may also need to obtain another degree or additional certifications to qualify for the job.

As you plan to make the transition, you should have a plan for how you will pay for the training yourself. Your current job may be willing to pay for continuing education, but will likely require that you stay at the company for a certain number of years afterward. If you want to switch career fields, but you are willing to continue working at your current company to take advantage of free tuition, it may be worth it.

Create a New Resume

After creating a game plan for the field you want to switch to and the training you'll need, create a resume that will highlight the experience that you have and show how it will benefit your potential employers. Take time to look carefully at all of your previous responsibilities. Pick the ones that are related to your new job or that show your responsibility and reliability.


It is important to study the type of keywords your new employer is looking for on resumes. Selecting relevant keywords may be able to help your resume get more views from recruiters.

Network To Find a New Job

With your resume overhauled, you should begin utilizing your social network to look for a job. Getting the word out will help you find opportunities you may not know about. It also helps to have people already working with the company who can recommend you for the position.

If you just finished a new degree to qualify for the job take advantage of the job search resources offered through your college. They can help you build your resume, practice interviewing and set you up with potential interviews at a job fair. It is important to widen your job search to give yourself more opportunities to land your dream job.


You can update your LinkedIn account to let recruiters know you're looking for work. The change is private; those who follow you (your employer included) won't see your updated status.

What To Do When You Get Your New Job

If you're lucky enough to get an offer for a new job and accept it, it's important that you keep a couple of things in mind as you plan to move from your current role to your new one.

Switch Your Benefits

As you transition over to your new job, you will need to switch your benefits. You may need to roll your 401(k) into an IRA or make the choice to leave it at your former company. Also, read up on your new company's health insurance. Who is the insurer? What are the premiums, and how does the coverage compare to what you had at your previous job?

Prepare for a New Culture

You may need to adjust to a different working environment. You may be working longer days with fewer shifts or you may find that you are required to be in touch with your company on a regular basis. These types of changes may happen any time you switch jobs, not just when you switch career fields.

Keep Your Options Open

It is important that you do not burn any bridges when you leave your job. You may find that you do not like your new job. Additionally, the people you worked with can serve as references even if you are going into a different line of work. If you can leave on a good note, it will widen your network when it is time to move on to a new job.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How can I change my career with no experience?

You'll need to research the education and training you'll need for your new role. You may find that a degree is necessary for the field, or that you'll need to enroll in licensing or certification courses.

How do I get a job in a different field?

In general, you'll need to follow three main steps. First, acquire the education and training the field requires. Second, update your resume and professional profiles. Third, reach out to your existing personal network to let people know you're looking for a new job.

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The Balance uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. Southern New Hampshire University. "How to Change Careers: Advice From Career Advisors."

  2. InterCoast Colleges. "How To Switch Careers Without Shaking Up Your Entire World."

  3. LinkedIn Help. "Let Recruiters Know You’re Open to Work."

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