This guest post comes from the editors of the The Allstate Blog, which helps people prepare for the unpredictability of life.
Increasing numbers of baby boomers are transforming their traditional retirement years with late-in-life employment, or what’s becoming known as an encore career.
There are different reasons to work during retirement: Some people are pursuing personal passions they may have set aside earlier in life—such as teaching, social work or environmental causes—while others are spurred by a layoff or looking to supplement their retirement income.
According to encore career advocate Marci Alboher, more than 9 million people are currently employed in a post-retirement job, and an estimated 31 million more are interested in one.
Ready for a second (or even third) act in your career? Consider these tips in finding a post-retirement job:
Plan in advance. Don’t wait until you retire to start thinking about a job after retirement. Always wanted to teach? Still dreaming about writing the next great American novel? Get a head start now by volunteering in your desired field, attending conferences or taking a community college workshop. Advanced preparation will help you hone your skills and fill in experience gaps on your resume.
Be persistent. For many boomers, finding the right job won’t happen overnight. The average boomer spends 18 months in “career transition” before finding a new job after retirement, says encore career advocate Alboher. You’ll need both patience and persistence to get it right.
Budget for transition. If supplemental income is an important part of your post-retirement career ambitions, then make sure you begin your search while you’re still employed. See what you can do to reduce your expenses now, and find ways to alter your current spending habits in preparation for that transition period.
Prepare for age bias. To combat age bias, stay up-to-date in your desired field and be comfortable using current technology. With the right credentials and training, age bias should be a non-issue. Also, consider job opportunities—such as coaching, tutoring or teaching—where your life experiences will be appreciated.
Choose an in-demand career. Health care is (not surprisingly) a sector where a great deal of hiring will take place. Medical support positions like nursing assistants will be in demand, but Alboher says that newer health care roles like wellness coaches (which don’t require a heavy medical background) will also be hot. Special education, math and science teachers will also be sought after, she says. Taking community college or online coursework now can help you prepare for these in-demand career fields.
What plans do you have for your post-retirement years?