Psychometric Profiling (Testing)

Career Counselling: – Should I apply for Jobs now or wait until the Coronavirus runs its course?

    Posted in Career Counselling, Career Development, Career Interest Testing, Career Planning, Defence Career Counselling (PEAP), Key Transferable Skills, Labour Markets, Psychometric Profiling (Testing), Resume Writing Services    |    No Comments

Earlier this week a career counselling client whom currently works in the real estate industry asked me “Katherine, should I bother applying for jobs now or should I wait until the Coronavirus settles down”?

My answer in short was YES and NO; let me explain: –

Applying for Jobs – A Career Counsellors Perspective

From my perspective, it really depends on the industries and occupations that you are applying for example if you are wanting to enter the Travel and Hospitality Industry for example now is not a good time to apply for positions when the industry is making thousands of individuals redundant; however if you are seeking employment in industries that are not directly impacted by the Coronavirus (COVID-19) then yes keep applying for positions.

Boom and Bust Industries – A quick overview

My rationale in relation to the above, is that whilst many industries are taking a hard hit with massive job losses and redundancies (the latest been Virgin Airlines) there are other industries, sectors and occupations that are experiencing mega growth and cannot keep up with the demand for example lets look at the big Supermarket chains e.g. Woolworths and Coles whom are struggling to re-stock the shelves and whom are also putting out a call to arms for administration officers and logistics coordinators etc. as they have more positions than they can fill – from what I have heard they just want people who want to work – is that you?

Other sectors that are experiencing a boom because of the COVID-19 are Medical, Transport and Logistics, Nursing, Pharmaceuticals, Video Conferencing and Telecommunications; and what about Community Services, Counselling, Welfare and Social Services; whilst we have not heard much about these industries at the moment it is my prediction that as more and more individuals and families are placed into lockdown it is an unfortunate side-effect that more and more of the general population will struggle to cope and as a result it is highly probable that domestic and family violence will increase and thus the potential for more children to be taken out of their homes and placed into care e.g. Foster Care.

By the way let’s not forget about the associated sectors, industries and occupations that support and/or supply these sectors and industries for example the medical field are in short supply of N95 masks at the moment; there in itself is a wide range of sectors, industries and occupations that will experience a boom from manufacturing (hiring individuals to make and ship the masks), to the wholesaler who buys and supplies to the retailer whom them onsells to the medical industry; to import and export trade, transport and logistics to get the masks from the wharfs and drop off locations around Australia to the hospitals and medical facilities around the nation, to the administrators in the offices who are ordering the supplies…. the list could go on and on….

Thus, my point is as one industry crashes and burns (for the short term or maybe longer term) there will be other industries that come in and take their place in terms of growth and employment opportunities.  The question is how badly do you want to work, will you only take a job that is/was similar or comparable to your old one or will you take a job in a different industry or sector at a similar pay level or maybe less that is not ideal role but at the end of the day pays and puts food on the table.

Labour Market and Economic Concerns if you do not take employment opportunities when they present themselves

My concern as an individual and career counsellor is the demand that is going to be placed on the welfare system now and the long term impact of this on the economy once we recover; we have had a horrific time of late with bushfires, floods and now the Corona Virus (COVID-19) what is this going to do to our insurance (another industry that is likely to boom as a result of claims been made) from commercial and house insurance claims to income protection insurance payouts.

Thus, is it responsible for us to say hey let’s try and wait this out – that is a judgement call on your part but from my perspective I see now as the perfect time to work on yourself and your career (as I have also previously articulated in my article Career Counselling – CoronaVirus – Impact on Careers – How to Manage and Grow Your Career During the Pandemic); to make use of this time to create or update your Resume, Online Profiles, Employment Documentation, to explore career and academic pathways; to identify your professional goals, strengths and development areas and make an action plan and follow through.

Now is the time to seize the day and keep on top of your career to the best of your ability; to seize the opportunities when they come in so you don’t struggle as an individual or provider for your family but also to grasp these opportunities so that we as a community and proud nation do not suffer to consequences of a recession or depression as a result of this period of time.

OK, You made me think – I want to apply for jobs but I don’t know where to start?

You know what, that is OK, that is what career counselling professionals like I am here for to help you figure out your career pathway, career options, key transferable skills, professional attributes and strengths; to empower you and help you write employment documentation so that you feel confident in your skills, capabilities and experiences and the application of same moving forward whatever that likes like.

So give me a call and let’s have a chat about how to get you from been stuck to a place of positive movement forward; remember baby steps – one at a time will get you to where you want to be a lot faster than not taking any steps at all while you wait to see what happens.

Defence Force Spouse or Partner

As outlined in my article How to access FREE Career Counselling during pandemic – Defence Spouses/Partners it is possible for you to access Career Counselling and Employment Assistance Services if you are eligible and have located within the last 12 months to the value of $1500.00 through the PEAP Program; so if you are not sure where to start, are struggling to find a new career or restart your career particularly in these difficult economic times please make use of this facility and telephone Blu Ripples we will be happy to provide you with a PEAP Quotation and subsequently provide you with the nominated services upon approval by the Defence.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Katherine is the Founder of Blu Ripples a specialist Career Counselling and Consulting practice located in Port Stephens NSW. Katherine is a nationally registered Career Development Specialist and Counsellor; is a Professional Member of the Career Development Association of Australia, Member of the Australian Counselling Association of Australia and Australian Association for Psychological Type.

Described as an down to earth, knowledgable, empathetic and empowering professional, Katherine has helped spouses and partners of Defence personnel with a range of Career Counselling and Employment Assistance services; prior to assisting the Defence in this way Katherine has previously assisted departing Defence personnel and contractors prepare employment documentation since 2003.


Career Counselling – CoronaVirus – Impact on Careers – How to Manage and Grow Your Career During the Pandemic

    Posted in Career Counselling, Career Development, Career Interest Testing, Career Planning, Key Transferable Skills, Labour Markets, Psychometric Profiling (Testing), Resume Writing Services    |    No Comments
Career Counselling During Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic

I had a client yesterday tell me that their boss sent them to Melbourne for a work trip and when they got back even though they had not been around people with the coronavirus and displayed no signs and symptoms that the boss insisted (mandated) that they go into lock down for two weeks and work from home; a difficult task when you are in the real estate business.

In outside world, I am hearing on the news that industries such as musicians, airlines, conference centres etc are all been restricted in some way due to conditions placed on public events and not gathering in groups of 500 or more; the economic impact is that this potentially will have a devastating impact on our economy and take some time to recover.

On the positive side, the crazy panic buying that everyone is engaged in at the moment is seeing Coles employ another 5000 casual employees nationwide to cope with the demands; so whilst some industries are clearly struggling others are growing in terms of labour requirements at the moment so much so that they are not coping with the demands just look at what is happening in Woolworths, doctors surgeries etc the lines are so long and supplies are in short supply (both material and labour).


So what we have here from a very clinical point of view is the Labour Market expanding and contracting, shifting and changing, to adapt to a new (hopefully temporary) world where it is said that the vast majority of the world’s population will contract the virus on some scale over the coming months from what I read an estimated 80%.

Thus, the question is not will I get the virus but when I get the virus what will I do.

At the moment the self-isolation period is for 2 weeks in which time you are not to leave your house and potentially infect others, so if you are sick please adhere to this, but in the meantime from a career point of few what can you do to manage your career.

CAREER PLANNING STRATEGIES TO EXECUTE OVER SELF ISOLATION PERIOD

First and foremost if you are employed on a full time, part time or casual basis explore options where you can minimise going into work for example what remote working strategies are available to you? Have a sensible and realistic conversation with your employer about working from home, the guidelines, expectations and boundaries around this.

When you are required to self-isolate use this time review your career – for example

  • Ask yourself – Are you hitting your career goals? If no – why not?
  • Pinpoint your happiness and satisfaction scale – Are you happy in your present job – if yes great – what can you do to take the next action step in your career or if no what are you unhappy about – are you feeling frustrated, lost confused etc?
  • Has it been a little while since you update your Resume or CV, LinkedIn, Seek profile now is the time to do this either yourself or through someone like me that offers telephone and online consultations (as well normally face to face consults –as long as you are not infected or come into contact with others who potentially or who have recently travelled overseas)
  • If you are not sure about what it is that you want to do in your career, or maybe you have been in a career for a while and want to try something new – now is the time to explore either through Career Planning Services with someone like me or explore career options and labour market statistics online and find out what is available
  • As I tell many clients, think about what your values, motives, needs and wants are in terms of employment opportunities and environments and create your own Selection Criteria so when you are reviewing job advertisements on line and wondering is this for me you have something to refer back to – a tick box of sorts, to help you define if this is the right opportunity to pursue or not at this present point in time – will it help you achieve your long term career objectives.
  • Develop an Academic Planning Strategy – identify where you are in your career and what qualifications or continual professional development courses you need to undertake in order to reach that next opportunity and confidently apply for it.
  • Review TAFE and University programs offered on line and on campus, what are the educational requirements you need to undertake a course i.e. ATAR’s, recognised prior learnings, are these courses accredited by industry bodies, will the course help you gain industry recognition upon completion.
  • If you are a partner of a Defence personnel and have recently moved to a new location check out the PEAP program and see what services you can access, telephone someone like me and ask for a quote, put that quote in and get the ball rolling in terms of the approval process and moving forward with Career Counselling and Employment Assistance Services

In short whilst the Corona Virus will have an impact on the labour market and the economy in general it does not have to be all doom and gloom every – focus on the positive what you can achieve during this down time, make use of it – create a career plan – grow, develop and evolve as an individual and professional during this time and then when things start to recover you will be in a better position to capture new and exciting opportunities as you have capitalised on the down time rather than squandering it.

Make a solid choice to use this time wisely to plan your career and make your future goals a reality by doing your research now.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Katherine is the Founder of Blu Ripples a specialist Career Counselling and Consulting practice located in Port Stephens NSW. Katherine is a nationally registered Career Development Specialist and Counsellor; is a Professional Member of the Career Development Association of Australia, Member of the Australian Counselling Association of Australia and Australian Association for Psychological Type. Katherine has worked in private practice since 2003 and prior to that worked in the corporate sector for a period of 12 years predominantly in Human Resources and Administration.

Authors Notation: As a result of writing and publishing this article one was invited by ABC Radio (Hobart) to participate in an interview on Career Change with the renowned Louise Saunders on 18th May 2020 at 7.10pm; to listen to the program segement click here and fast forward to 7 min 30 into the commencement of the program.


Key Transferable Skills Report – A New Career Counselling Service

    Posted in Aptitude Testing, Career Consulting Services, Career Counselling, Career Development, Career Planning, Key Transferable Skills    |    No Comments

Key Transferable Skills Report - Blu Ripples

INTRODUCING OUR KEY TRANSFERABLE SKILLS REPORT

As part of the Resume Writing Process, I frequently ask clients to identify their Key Transferable Skills and their perceived areas of expertise.

Regardless of the clients’ career life stage, I frequently find that they stumble at this point.

The principal reason for this pertains to objectivity; and whilst we may undertake a role for a particular period of time there is little time for reflections or as clients so frequently state “Katherine, I just get on and do the job; I don’t think of my role in these terms”.

And there in lies a major issue when it comes to the job search and interview process.  That is, regardless of your title and the number of years you have been in the work force it is imperative to know who you are, what you bring to the table and your development requirements in order to effectively pursue and achieve your career goals.

Whilst, I have previously created Key Transferable Skills Reports for Spouses of Defence Force personnel; and I have helped thousands of individuals identify their transferable skills through my Career Consulting – Resume Writing Services (since 2003); one has identified a niche area and is excited to launch our Key Transferable Skills Report which is accessible to all individuals of legal working age and above whom have held at least one position.

To find out more – click on Key Transferable Skills Report

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Katherine is the Founder of Blu Ripples a specialist Career Counselling and Consulting practice located in Port Stephens NSW.  Katherine is a nationally registered Career Development Specialist and Counsellor; is a Professional Member of the Career Development Association of Australia, Member of the Australian Counselling Association of Australia and Australian Association for Psychological Type. Katherine has worked in private practice since 2003 and prior to that worked in the corporate sector for a period of 12 years predominantly in Human Resources and Administration.


Career Counselling and Planning – What is going on in our universities? The need to understand self

    Posted in Academic Planning, Aptitude Testing, Career Counselling, Career Development, Career Development Association of Australia (CDAA), Career Interest Testing, Career Planning    |    No Comments

Career Counselling and Planning - Blu Ripples Blog

CAREER COUNSELLING AND PLANNING

A couple of months ago, one was exploring Master programs offered at a variety of Australian universities. During this process, one spoke with Read More


CAREER PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT FOR REGIONAL AND RURAL COMMUNITY MEMBERS

    Posted in Career Consulting Services, Career Counselling, Career Development, Career Development Association of Australia (CDAA), Career Planning, Key Transferable Skills, Labour Markets, Psychometric Profiling (Testing), Resume Writing Services    |    No Comments

Career Planning and Development Regional and Rural Community Members

Do you live in a regional or rural area in Australia and feel stuck in your career? That there is limited or no employment opportunities? Discover how to identify and capture employment opportunities in your area.

CAREER PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT

Career Guidance and Advice, for Regional and Rural Community Members

As a Career Development Specialist and Counsellor whom lives and works in Port Stephens, a regional area on the NSW North Coast, one has facilitated numerous regional and rural clients since 2012 to identify and explore career options and pathways and as such understands the challenges and opportunities that come from living in areas outside of major CBD locations.

Whilst it is true that the volume of opportunities is not the same as a major CBD location such as Sydney; it does not mean that opportunities do not exist.  It simply means that regional and rural community members need to dig a little deeper, explore labour market statistics in more detail, identify and respond to opportunities and possibly make a few more compromises in relation to their desired outcome(s) for example embracing portfolio careers (having several part time or casual positions) rather than traditional full time 9 to 5 positions.

Career Planning and Development – Where to Start?

Like their major city counterparts regional and rural community members need to: –

  • Establish baselines
  • Expand and challenge their mindset
  • Think outside the square
  • Determine their career interests, employment needs and wants
  • Determine the needs, current and future employment opportunities of the local and/or surrounding communities
  • Ask themselves a variety of career and employment related questions such as: –
  • Are my career and/or academic objectives realistic?
  • Will my actual or intended academic pathway provide a return on investment?
  • Do I really want to work in this position – industry? Why?
  • Am I willing to relocate (intrastate, interstate or overseas) to achieve my career goal?
  • What are my alternative career options and pathways?
  • What are the top employment industries and employers in my area?
  • Am I willing to work for myself or would I prefer to be employed by someone?
  • Do I have the skills, knowledge, qualifications and experiences to start my own business or work as an independent contractor?
  • What are the niche employment markets in my area and how can I capitalise on these? That is ask yourself – what products, services, industries are over or under represented in your area and how can you market yourself to capture appropriate opportunities
  • Is it best to market myself as a generalist or a specialist my chosen field?

Where are the employment – job opportunities?

Just like each individual, each regional and rural area across Australia has its strengths, areas of growth and opportunities for community members.

In the 7+ years one has lived in Port Stephens NSW with ones’ husband; over this timeframe we have noticed a lot of change and growth in our suburb and surrounding area; in fact, we have seen the area progress with: –

  • New Shopping Centre Complexes
  • New residential and commercial building lot releases; subsequent construction of establishments
  • Expansion of the nearby RAAF base
  • Procurement of land for aged care and educational facilities
  • Commencement of construction of a local sporting complex
  • A Customs facility been built and utilised at Newcastle Airport and over the Christmas period (18/19) saw the trial of direct flights to New Zealand from Newcastle NSW – the facilities are there now – so what does this mean for the longer term? Is this a possible new international airport base in NSW ( even if it only services Pacific and Asia)– if so just imagine the jobs this will create for the area not only in Tourism and Transport but in other supporting and/or complementary industries

All of this within a 10 or so minute drive of our home; thus, when reading the above information – what does this tell you about this particular region?

From ones’ perspective, when analysing these changes in terms of employment industries the obvious industry that is booming in the area at the moment is Construction; which just so happens to be a top 3 industry across Australia and within Port Stephens (based on latest labour market statistic information).

Occupations that fall within the construction industry include Electrician, Painter, Tiler, Project Manager, Construction – Site Manager, Labourer, Excavator Operator, Fencer, Surveyor, Plumber, Building Estimator, Building Inspector, Pest Inspector, Carpenter and Joiner.

However, just like any other industry there is a myriad of occupations and industries that complement and/or support the Construction industry both during the planning and construction phase and post construction (in terms of providing products and services to residents and the border community) for example: –

  • Administration, Secretarial and Bookkeeping Services
  • Architects and Landscape Architects
  • Engineers and Draftspersons
  • Medical and Allied Health Professionals e.g. Doctors, Psychologists, Counsellors, Social Workers, Mental Health Professionals, Rehabilitation Therapists
  • Retails Managers and Shop Assistants
  • Personal Services e.g. Handyman and Cleaners
  • Tourism e.g. Accommodation for workers whom live out-side the region
  • Business Services – Human Resource Managers, Accountants, Marketing Professional, Information Technology professionals, safety specialists
  • Education – Teachers, Childcare Workers, Librarians, Career Guidance Advisors, Teachers’ Aides, Lollypop (Traffic Control) professionals.

Sometimes we become so stuck in our particular mindset of I want to be this, I want to earn so much per week, I don’t want to work in that location and/or even that we are above a particular position or industry that we fail to see the opportunities right in front of us.

As one highlighted through the above summary, opportunities do exist in regional and rural areas; it may be that we just need to take a step back and clearly look at our marketplace (what is happening in our region) in greater detail – to do a little more digging (research) and analysis to find out what the opportunities are in order to ascertain where you fit – be it marketing yourself and your unique skill base as an employee or independent worker to capture the market or better yet the niche in the market.

Digging a Little Deeper

As previously discussed, opportunities do exist in rural and regional areas however a little more digging maybe required to find out where you fit in the grand scheme of things.

One way to start, digging a little deeper, is to research your regions labour – employment market statistics; there is a wealth of free and paid information on the internet.

In fact, in researching data for this article, one found (online) a letter dated 10th March 2017 from Port Stephens Council to Senate Finance and Public Administration Committee – Parliament House Canberra; supporting the relocation of government bodies to regional areas.

In the aforementioned correspondence the author (Mr. Wayne Wallis) stated that “the Hunter Region has been experiencing economic restructuring with a shift away from traditional goods-producing sectors like mining and manufacturing to high value added knowledge based service sectors”.

Ones’ interpretation of this commentary is that councils in the Hunter region are strategizing and actioning change management plans to shift the employment market, of their respective areas, to a high quality knowledge base sectors such as Information Technology, Accounting, Counselling, Business Management, Medical and Allied Health, Education and Training and moving away from sectors such as Manufacturing, Mining, Electricity and Gas.

Thus, whilst the current labour market in this region maybe goods-producing at present; those considering their career options and pathways would be wise to take this commentary on board and plan for the future rather making decisions based on todays’ (current) needs.

Remember it takes time to study and gain experience and when you have completed any training it is important that the jobs are available in your region, a region close by or that you can develop online services to target the wider community in order to support yourself in your preferred residential location – community.

In closing, as one has clearly articulated throughout this article; each regional and rural area in Australia is different.  However, if you are prepared to do some research and analysis, observe the current services and industries in your area, identify the shortfalls and develop a service or product to meet these needs as an independent worker; or conversely if you can tailor your training and employment documentation (Resume-CV) to the needs of employers through the clear representation of your key transferable skills, knowledge and experiences you will be in front of the competition.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Katherine is the Founder of Blu Ripples a specialist Career Counselling and Consulting practice located in Port Stephens NSW.  Katherine is a nationally registered Career Development Specialist and Counsellor; is a Professional Member of the Career Development Association of Australia, Member of the Australian Counselling Association of Australia and Australian Association for Psychological Type. Katherine has worked in private practice since 2003 and prior to that worked in the corporate sector for a period of 12 years predominantly in Human Resources and Administration.


Finding the Right Career Path for You

    Posted in Career Consulting Services, Career Counselling, Career Development, Career Development Report, Career Interest Testing, Career Planning, Psychometric Profiling (Testing), Resume Writing Services    |    No Comments

Career Path

Career Counselling – Finding the Right Career Path for You

Have you ever wondered what it is like to find the right career pathway for you, to find your passion?

Over the last couple of weeks I have had the privilege to work with two such individuals.

The first soul whom cam to see me, came to have a Career Development Report produced.  The individual soul in question came to me with some firm ideas about what they wanted to do but at the end of the psychometric assessment process had their interest piques in a totally new area; you could say their perspective or awareness was awakened.  So much so that the individual soul telephoned me a copy of time before the delivery of their report and told me that they had discovered a firm interest in Primary Education as a result of the psychometric profiling session and had subsequently taken action and applied to university to do a bridging course in preparation for study next year; and now was just waiting to have the report delivered to put the final pieces of the puzzle into place.

The second soul whom came to see me, had already transitioned into her passion (new career) a couple of years before hand and sought help to prepare her employment documentation for the next strategic career move.

Interestingly both souls were in their 40’s, the first in their early 40’s the second in their late forties.

At a time when most of us can become stuck nay bogged down in our career and life, because of life circumstances and/our mindset. These two individual souls broke the glass ceiling or pushed their way through the mud and reached new peaks, dispelling fears about starting over and/or not gaining employment because they were “too old” they simply established their goals and moved forward with confidence, determination and vigour.

So looking back at both of these souls what are the 3 qualities they displayed and how can we learn from them Read More


Career Counselling: – Our Career Counselling, Consulting and Planning Services

    Posted in Aptitude Testing, Career Consulting Services, Career Counselling, Career Development, Career Development Association of Australia (CDAA), Career Development Report, Career Interest Testing, Career Planning, Psychometric Profiling (Testing), Resume Writing Services    |    No Comments

DO YOU FEEL LOST, CONFUSED, OVERWHELMED OR HEMMED IN WITH RESPECT TO YOUR CAREER?

 

 

Do you want to break free from your self limiting beliefs and actions to open and capture a world of career possibilities and opportunities?

Since 2003, Blu Ripples Founder, Katherine Foster, has helped thousands of individuals just like you identify, explore, manage and tranform their career.

Blu Ripples offers a diverse range of services including

  • Career Counselling
  • Career Consulting
  • Career Coaching and Mentoring
  • Career Planning
  • Personality Profiling
  • Career Interest Testing
  • Aptitude Testing
  • Resume Writing Services
  • LinkedIn Profile Services
  • Outplacement Services

and so much more…

Blu Ripples listening, inspiring and empowering you to challenge your beliefs and actions to help you capture a world of career possibilities and opportunities.

Make 2018 your year to shine for the world to see.


Career Development Professionals – Sorting the Chaff from the Wheat

    Posted in Aptitude Testing, Career Consulting Services, Career Counselling, Career Development, Career Development Association of Australia (CDAA), Career Interest Testing, Career Planning    |    No Comments

Searching for a Career Development Practitioner

Sorting the Chaff from the Wheat – How to ascertain the legitimacy of Career Development Practitioners in Australia

 

Career Development is a large umbrella or net that draws together a myriad of Career Services occupations and brands them together in one category with the purposes of facilitating and empowering a client in the exploration, development and management of their career over the course of their career life cycle.

WHAT OCCUPATIONS FALL UNDER CAREER DEVELOPMENT ?

There are a multitude of Career Service occupations that fall under the Career Development banner including: –

  • Career Advisor
  • Career Coach
  • Career Consultant
  • Career Counsellor
  • Career Development Expert
  • Career Development Practitioner
  • Career Guidance Officer
  • Career Management Consultant
  • Employment Counsellor
  • Guidance Officer
  • Job Developer
  • Placement Co-ordinator
  • Vocational Counsellor
  • Vocational Rehabilitation Counsellor
  • Work Experience Co-ordinator

As illustrated above, there are many occupations that fall under the umbrella of Career Development; which in ones’ opinion can potentially cause clients a great deal of stress trying to determine who is the appropriate service provider for me.

SOURCING CAREER DEVELOPMENT SERVICE PROVIDERS

Read More