The coronavirus pandemic ignited many shifts in the workforce, and even though things have stabilized, there are still several industries that professionals are transitioning out of and looking for new careers. According to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, in 2021, 47.8 million workers quit their jobs, and this number grew to more than 50 million in 2022. However, in 2023, these rates decreased to around 30.5 million. Today there are more job vacancies than unemployed workers in some industries, which is a good sign if you are looking to make a change.

What are the Industries Professionals are Transitioning Out of?

Some of the most common industries that employees are leaving include:

  • Hospitality
  • Retail
  • Food Service
  • Manufacturing
  • Education
  • Healthcare
  • Transportation

Employees are exploring other options and seeing where they can put their skills to use in different ways. They are using knowledge and experience and applying it to other industries and roles.

However, these are not the only industries where there are vacancies. While every field experiences some level of turnover, these are areas where it is currently more prominent or makes a noticeable impact. You have probably seen companies advertising that they are hiring or offering sign-on bonuses.

Why are Employees Leaving Certain Fields?

There are many reasons why employees are changing careers. For some, key factors are higher pay, better benefits, improved work-life balance, flexibility to work from home, and a better work culture or environment. Employees want to feel valued and appreciated.

Workers are experiencing burnout and are tired of dealing with hostile or demanding customers or leadership. What’s more, the pressure to do more with less is draining. Additionally, many workers are not receiving the training and support they need to work effectively. Still yet, some employees are simply ready for change and want to do something more meaningful or rewarding.

What Skills Can Help Employees Changing Careers?

If you are in one of the industries professionals are transitioning out of, all is not lost. You have gained plenty of skills that can be applied in other settings. You just need to shift how you view your experience and abilities. Don’t view your options through the lens of “I’m just a/an [insert job title].” You are more than a teacher, a server, a sales associate, a warehouse manager, etc. Therefore, take some time to consider what you have taken from these experiences.

Some hard skills may be industry-specific, but they may also still be transferable. For instance, knowing how to use a certain software program or programming language. But there may be other industries that also use that technology.

Soft skills transition more easily between careers. Remember, these are abilities that come naturally or are developed over many years rather than being a technical proficiency that can be taught. A few examples of soft skills that you can use across multiple industries include:

  • Communication

Your ability to communicate with different types of people can serve you well. For example, shifting from talking to a manager to translating that information to a vendor and then relaying updates to a customer. Or keeping detailed notes about interactions with a client, a meeting that was held, or plans for an upcoming event. For teachers, creating lesson plans is useful for writing training programs or procedural manuals.

  • Project Management

Are you great at working across groups of people and making sure everyone knows what they are doing? Does your attention to detail allow you to track deadlines and task completion? Managing projects is about multitasking and keeping on top of many moving parts. Projects happen in any industry, it’s just a matter of figuring out what needs to be done and making it happen.

  • Process Improvement

There are always ways to work more efficiently and effectively. Being a self-starter who looks for these opportunities and is proactive about embracing change can work to your advantage. Consider the following: Have you streamlined workflows, created new forms, or made other adjustments that enable people to be more productive? Think about the general steps you took to do this and how that is applicable to other processes or fields.

  • Analysis

The ability to look at data and make informed decisions is applicable across many industries. Maybe you are used to reading test scores or inventory levels, but you are still interpreting these results and using that data to make adjustments. If you are number savvy, you can learn how to apply that to different areas.

  • Leadership

Strong leaders are needed in every organization. It doesn’t matter whether you are leading a team of sales representatives or a class of students. You still must gain their trust, build a positive culture, coach and mentor them, and empower them to meet established goals.

  • Problem Solving

Overcoming challenges and coming up with creative solutions is a great strength to have. Working in customer service equips you with the skills you need to handle a wide range of problems and interact with diverse people. Plus, you learn how to stay calm under pressure and de-escalate tense situations. This can transition into a job in customer success where you are helping onboard clients, making sure that they have everything they need, and checking in to confirm they are satisfied with the service they’re receiving or understand how to use different products.

  • Time Management

Are you looking to switch to a remote or hybrid role? Your ability to manage your time and work effectively with little oversight can be advantageous. Also, your ability to meet deadlines and coordinate projects so that everything is completed on time can translate to a job in a different field.

How Should You Write Your Resume to Transition into a New Field?

Once you have identified some of your transferable skills and experience, highlight those throughout your resume. Get rid of industry-specific jargon and put these points into terms that people outside of that field would understand. Demonstrate how what you have done will help you be successful with what you want to do. Your summary, core competencies, and cover letter can help show potential employers that connection so they don’t have to guess.

There are many industries professionals are transitioning out of, but also many opportunities to use those skills in a new field. Partnering with a professional resume writer can help you present your experience in an effective manner. Contact Grammar Chic today to learn more and get started!