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Not-for-profit, COVID-19 and looking ahead: a candidate’s perspective

not-for-profit, finance professional, Moir Group, new job, careers, COVID-19, accounting, finance recruitment

For the not-for-profit sector, COVID-19 has changed how businesses operate and the tug of war between the head (fiscal strength) and the heart (the mission and purpose) has never been more apparent.

It’s shaken up programs, funding models, team dynamics and the speed in which decisions are made. For Moir Group candidate Liz, her career took a new path almost overnight. Having worked in the not-for-profit industry for over 10 years in her role as a Financial Accountant, she recently found herself without a job and having to start from scratch. A daunting prospect for many.

She sat down with the head of our Not-for-Profit Specialist Division, Trisha Roberts, to talk about how the change impacted her, redefining herself in a new industry, and what she did to bounce back.

You recently lost your job due to COVID-19, tell us about that experience and how it made you feel?

It made me feel quite stressed and uncertain about my future career. I had been working with my previous employer in the not-for-profit space for more than 10 years, and never thought that I would be forced to back into the job market at such an awkward time.

What steps did you take to secure your next role? What approach did you take mentally?

Due to COVID-19, everything had been shut down, so I took the opportunity to have a rest, both mentally and physically, which I needed. I also tried to stay positive, telling myself that in spite of the circumstances, it could be a good opportunity for me to move on to a new chapter in my career.

It’s good to have a try to see what the other opportunities are out there in the market and where I can go in my next move. Understanding the changing environment is important for everyone and we need to keep up with the world by learning new things and adapting to this new environment quickly. This is how we will survive.

Tell me about how you secured your current role and how this role has made you feel?

I started looking for a new job after the Easter Break and was prepared to be looking for a while as the market has been very slow due to COVID-19. I applied for a few jobs in various industries and organisations. I was lucky in that I was selected for an interview by one of your consultants, Kelly-Ann on the second day after I started applying for a new job!

Kelly-Ann was great. She sent me some great tips and questions to help prepare me for the interview. They were very useful as I had not been for an interview for a very long time.

I secured the role and it made me feel very confident that although the market is slow, there is still movement for essential services, and I am now working in a finance role for the Aged Care sector.

What has been the most challenging part of the last few months for you?

I guess the most challenging part was the change of mindset for me. Just because I had been in a not-for-profit organisation for more than 10 years, did not necessarily mean that I couldn’t move on to a new position quickly. I thought it would be difficult for me to adjust to a new environment and learning new things, especially as the new organisation has a very different structure to what I am used to, but that hasn’t been the case. I have adapted well and am very much enjoying the new job.

What has been the best part?  What have you learnt about yourself during this time?

I actually found myself adjusting very well in the new environment and getting to know the new business very quickly. I am actually mentally stronger and more adaptable than what I thought I would be and am more prepared for change.

The lesson here is to never underestimate yourself. And sometimes, change is good for you.

What advice do you have for others in a similar situation? Did you do anything differently this time around to secure a new role?

My advice for others is that when one door closes, there is always a window open to you. Sometimes change provides more opportunity and directs you to the right position.

Keep learning and equip yourself with knowledge. Experience and will navigate you to the right path.

 

If you would like help to secure your next role or advice on how to take control of your career, get in touch with us here or give us a call on (02) 9262 4836. We are always here to help.

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