An article published by The Straits Times last year reported that more international firms and local SMEs are offering SAHMs flexible hours, internships, and even career coaching to encourage them to re-enter the workforce.
However, if you are a stay-at-home-mom (SAHM), rejoining the workforce after a long break can be an intimidating, even terrifying experience. You may have lost contact with your former clients, colleagues and associates. Perhaps you also worry that your skills might no longer be relevant, and are not sure what to do to seek help.
But what can you, as an individual, do to increase your employment chances? We have shortlisted some of the top communities you can join to see what other SAHMs are up to and potentially meet these SAHMs.
#1 Career Navigators
Most of us have heard of social enterprise Mums@Work, but did you know that they also have Career Navigators as a subsidiary? This organisation focuses on bridging the gap between employers and SAHMs intending to rejoin the workforce.
Career Navigators frequently organises educational, employer branding, and recruitment activities. These recruitment fairs and firm-led career training sessions will give you the opportunity to meet other SAHMs, besides networking with employers.
To help SAHMs planning to re-enter the workforce, Career Navigators work alongside many organisations to conduct training programmes such as:
Career searching: Resume writing, interviewing techniques, networking know-how, personal branding.
Skills upgrading: Help ensure that your technical skills, industry knowledge, and management abilities are relevant.
Self-marketing enhancement: How to brand your career image.
Well-being development: Facilitate effective decision making that support work and family choices.
These training sessions are usually held in groups, which allows you to mingle with other mums.
Careersmums is the very first online job portal in Singapore to list mainly part-time jobs for working mums. There is even a dedicated section for job listings. Other than part-time jobs, there are also freelance and contract jobs, and jobs with flexible hours available on the site.
This article relates a trainer’s experience at a networking session organised by Careermums. Michelle Lim, Managing Director and Principal Trainer at Clarity Training and Consulting wrote a succinct article about the power of words in networking with potential employers.
Networking events will give you the opportunity to speak with experienced and dedicated women in the workforce who strive to guide you in your journey to return to the workforce.
Who knows, the fellow SAHM you meet at a networking event might be your future colleague too.
This is a Facebook group meant to support working mums living with their families in Singapore. Join this group if you are a SAHM wanting to see what working mums are discussing about. You will get plenty of friendly ears if you’ll like to ask a question or share an experience.
As this group consists of working mums, you do not have to fear judgement even if you are asking a seemingly basic question such as: “How can I manage my time better to spend more time with my child?”. These mums understand how tough it is raising a child, even more so to continue working.
If you are considering re-entering the workforce, post a question, read the advice provided, and even connect with some mums you would like to be friends with!
This is a community supporting mums-to-be, new mums, and mums new to Singapore with young children up to age five.
If you are a SAHM, this is a group you can join to hear and exchange experiences with other women in a rather similar position as you. You can also find out what other mums are up to. Are most of them still working? Have they quit their jobs to take care of their children? Have any women expressed interest in returning to the workforce one day?
This is a volunteer-run organisation. With close to 4,000 members, the group organises regular events and talks for members. There will be great opportunities to start friendships here.
#5 Women Who Invest
Women Who Invest is a 1,000+ person community on Facebook made up of women who share a common interest in investing and better managing their personal finances.
Whether its exchanging advice and tips on investing and careers, or simply an avenue to share personal experiences, you’ll find insights and solace in this group of like-minded women.
#6 Ladies and Business in Singapore
Ladies and Business in Singapore is a unique community for female expats in Singapore who are running businesses or working in SMEs.
Unlike Career Navigators and Careermums, Ladies and Business in Singapore is a Facebook group with over 2000 members. It was created in 2013 and cater to women who are interested to join or launch a business or support charity work and NGOs. It is a platform to connect with other women, share ideas, and support each other.
If you are a foreigner living in Singapore and also a SAHM running your own business from home, this is a good platform to join if you’ll like to hear the stories of other working ladies, especially if you are considering transitioning from a home-based business to re-entering the Singapore workforce.
If you happen to chance upon a post by a career coach or HR manager, you might even consider connecting with that person to better understand the Singapore job market and skills needed today.
This is a closed group so be sure to send in a request if you would like to be a part of it.
Getting The Right Support In Your Job Search
Job searching can be a tiring and draining process. To improve your chances of securing a job, never stop improving your skillsets, even if that means being a SAHM. Learning is a lifelong journey, and many jobs now require specific skills.
While networking, always keep an open mind and be open to a possible career change. You might just discover your interest in another industry. Joining one or even all of the above-mentioned communities allows you to meet other women who might be experts in their fields and willing to give advice.
If you are a Singaporean who is looking for a job but is unable to find one, Workforce Singapore can help connect you a to job you are looking for. To get started, you can make an appointment with Workforce Singapore here. Someone from the organisation will give you a call to arrange to meet up, and to link you up with the right companies and schemes that you are suitable for.
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