Test Drive a Career with Temporary Work
"Employment fell in construction, manufacturing, and wholesale trade, while temporary help services and health care added jobs.”
-Bureau of Labor Statistics
While the statement above may not sound like your dream come true, there is merit to temporary jobs for college graduates. Do you remember how it felt when you had to declare your major? You weren’t sure if you wanted to dedicate yourself to one specific field of study. Entering the job market is a similar experience. When preparing your resume and starting the job search, the biggest roadblock is the answer to the question: What are you looking for, or what do you want to do? Usually, people get a blank stare and just shake their heads in wonder.
Now, look at the statement at the top of this article again. Wouldn’t it be nice to test drive a job before you committed yourself? There was a time when people stayed at a job until retirement. We know that is no longer the case. According to the U.S. Department of Labor (2006), people between the ages of 18 and 38 hold the same job for an average of 3 to 5 years. Additionally, if you speak to most people, they will tell you that the first couple of jobs they held defined their career for the rest of their professional lives. For example, if your first job happens to be in health care, chances are high that you will remain in some aspect of the health care industry for the remainder of your career. This might be fine if that was your desired career field, but experience tells me this is not always the case.
Once we begin in a field, it’s hard to translate all that we have learned into a new career. The thought of leaving the salary and lifestyle we’ve grown accustomed to and starting all over is unsettling.
Although we all want the stability of a full-time job, our best bet in this stagnant economy may be to look for temporary jobs. According to Tory Johnson of ABC News (2010), 300,000 temporary jobs are available. With so many jobs out there to choose from, you can think outside the box and test drive a few industries before you declare your profession.