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Old 13.02.2015, 15:59
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Looking for a job after being a stay at home mother

Hello,

I moved to Switzerland to follow my husband. I had children and decided to stay at home - my husband was working a lot, I did not speak the local language, I didn't know anyone and besides all that it took all my energy to take care of my children.
However, I always taught to start working again one day. During this period i sent some applications and even had 3 interviews that did not conclude to a job (this was 2-3 years ago) .

Last September I started to look for a job really intensively. Every day I am checking all recruitment agencies and job search sites for new positions and am sending my application, but without any result. They called me only from one of the recruitment agencies for a general interview, which gave me some hope, but that was 2 months ago and since then I have no news from them.

I used to work in audit mostly. I have 8 years of experiences (in Europe but outside Switzerland) and have been at home for almost 6 years now..So, I am as well not young anymore.

Now I am looking for more junior positions as a Financial/Business analyst in Vaud (but also Fribourg and Geneva), since for these I feel confident to be able to do them well, while auditing is just not possible while having a family. I am applying as well to the Accounting positions.
The time passes by very quickly and I start to feel really bad for not being able to find a job.

Is there any career help center that I could turn to ? I know ORP (I used it, but it was not really helpful). I found as well some spouse career centers that provide help to job seekers but it costs quite a lot of money so I am postponing to contact them.

If you have any tips, suggestions regarding my job search, please let me know. Thanks a lot !
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Old 13.02.2015, 16:07
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Re: Looking for a job after being a stay at home mother

What nationality are you and what type of permit do you have? What Swiss languages do you speak?
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Old 13.02.2015, 16:38
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Re: Looking for a job after being a stay at home mother

Would you consider working in something outside your field? e.g. as an English teacher or as a Tagesmutter?

Just a few thought to perhaps expand your horizons...

I wish you lots of luck in your search!
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Old 13.02.2015, 16:50
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Re: Looking for a job after being a stay at home mother

The lower the job the more applicants they have. These positions can have literally hundreds of applications.

Don't lower your expectations. You have experience. Go for jobs that require a minimum of that much experience. Those jobs will still have many applicants but less so.

Now you have to get out and network, network, network.
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Old 13.02.2015, 17:59
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Re: Looking for a job after being a stay at home mother

You say you didn't speak the language (I guess French from location) when you arrived- but how many years ago was that? Do you have a good command now, both in speaking and writing?

When I was in the same situation in England- staying at home for 9 years- I was very aware that reaching a good level in the language would be essential for the next stage. If you have not reached a good standard- then sacrifice the next few months on doing an intensive course and get involved with people and situations which involve as much communication as possible. Bonne chance.
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Old 18.02.2015, 11:56
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Re: Looking for a job after being a stay at home mother

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What nationality are you and what type of permit do you have? What Swiss languages do you speak?

Hello,

Thank you for your replies.

To answer- I have a B permit. I come from second wave EU joining countries. Next year, thanks to my husband, I should get a C permit.
I speak French, not really great, but quite ok. German very basic.

I just had a short phone interview for a job I am really interested in. The HR told me to be in contact with me within next 10 days to inform me if they will continue the process (to a face interview) or not. The beginning was really promising, at the end I did not have the same feeling..Anyhow, if they were really interested, they would not wait for 10 days, i guess??

With the current job market situation i believe the most important skill for any job now is to know how to sell yourself..

miniMia mentioned networking- I am still one of the 'previous' generations, and it is really not in my character to approach someone just because I want something from the other person while I can not offer something in return.. I know I would have to change the attitude.

I hope for some luck one day !

Have a nice day!
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Old 18.02.2015, 12:11
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Re: Looking for a job after being a stay at home mother

Well, don't be put off by the 10 day thing. The Swiss don't always move quickly on the hiring front and it could also be something as simple as someone involved in the next stage being on holiday at the moment (I think it's school half term now).
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Old 18.02.2015, 19:58
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Re: Looking for a job after being a stay at home mother

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Hello,

Thank you for your replies.

To answer- I have a B permit. I come from second wave EU joining countries. Next year, thanks to my husband, I should get a C permit.
I speak French, not really great, but quite ok. German very basic.

I just had a short phone interview for a job I am really interested in. The HR told me to be in contact with me within next 10 days to inform me if they will continue the process (to a face interview) or not. The beginning was really promising, at the end I did not have the same feeling..Anyhow, if they were really interested, they would not wait for 10 days, i guess??

With the current job market situation i believe the most important skill for any job now is to know how to sell yourself..

miniMia mentioned networking- I am still one of the 'previous' generations, and it is really not in my character to approach someone just because I want something from the other person while I can not offer something in return.. I know I would have to change the attitude.

I hope for some luck one day !

Have a nice day!
Well... I feel the same as you, which is why we remain unemployment. :-/

Good luck. Hang in there!
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Old 18.02.2015, 23:46
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Re: Looking for a job after being a stay at home mother

[QUOTE=skyfly;2343086]
I just had a short phone interview for a job I am really interested in. The HR told me to be in contact with me within next 10 days to inform me if they will continue the process (to a face interview) or not. [QUOTE]


skyfly, that's 10 days to work as hard as you can improving your local language skills. Seriously, get out your books, learn vocabulary and grammar, listen to language-learning videos online, converse with anyone you can find who speaks well.
You already have some things HR likes about you now. And a face-to-face interview will be much, much better (even if it is conducted in English) if you can demonstrate that your French is getting more and more polished.
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Old 19.02.2015, 08:52
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Re: Looking for a job after being a stay at home mother

You were a stay at home mother for 6 years and you didn't use the time to learn the local language? I'm not sure there was any more ideal time to be able to do this, you had a good amount of free time to study in-between looking after the kids.

Anyway, good luck with the job hunting, it's going to be tough and I would maybe be looking at less competitive areas than accounting etc if you have had such a long career break. Maybe start with an admin job for a good-sized company and work up from there when you are back in the working rhythm?

Last edited by Richdog; 19.02.2015 at 09:11.
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Old 19.02.2015, 09:11
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Re: Looking for a job after being a stay at home mother

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You were a stay at home mother for 6 years and you didn't use the time to learn the local language? There was literally no more perfect time to be able to do this, you had tons of free time to study inbetween looking after the kids.

Anyway, good luck with the job hunting, it's going to be tough and I would maybe be looking at less competitive areas than accounting etc if you have had such a long career break. Maybe start with an admin job and work up from there when you are back in the working rhythm?
Looking after babies to young children stage is very demanding, learning a language during this time can be difficult if the children are more demanding than usual, we do not know what the OP experienced so why judge?
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Old 19.02.2015, 09:22
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Re: Looking for a job after being a stay at home mother

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You were a stay at home mother for 6 years and you didn't use the time to learn the local language? I'm not sure there was any more ideal time to be able to do this, you had a good amount of free time to study in-between looking after the kids.

Anyway, good luck with the job hunting, it's going to be tough and I would maybe be looking at less competitive areas than accounting etc if you have had such a long career break. Maybe start with an admin job for a good-sized company and work up from there when you are back in the working rhythm?
Zzzzzzzzzz......

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Looking after babies to young children stage is very demanding, learning a language during this time can be difficult if the children are more demanding than usual, we do not know what the OP experienced so why judge?
It's alright. There'll be a nurse along soon to take him back to geriatric ward
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Old 19.02.2015, 09:49
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Re: Looking for a job after being a stay at home mother

Silly question ....... but have you looked at "Jobs" at the top of this forum page?

For example, I just entered Lausanne as location, for the following list.
They are mainly through agencies, which you may already be dealing with.

http://www.englishforum.ch/jobs/?job...5B%5D=lausanne
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Old 19.02.2015, 10:06
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Re: Looking for a job after being a stay at home mother

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Looking after babies to young children stage is very demanding, learning a language during this time can be difficult if the children are more demanding than usual, we do not know what the OP experienced so why judge?
I have a big family with around three stay at home mothers (and one single parent who is also a full-time teacher with two young kids) with a minimum of two kids each. It's not really accurate when anyone says they don't have free time when being a stay at home parent. I also know a stay at home father with two kids who did a degree and now runs a full-time business, and said if he didn't fill his day with stuff in-between looking after the kids, especially during the earlier years when they basically napped a ton, he got bored out of his mind.

I have never seen anything to suggest that stay at home parents don't have a lot of free time on their hands. There are a ton of articles discussing this very subject on the web to support this too.
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Old 19.02.2015, 10:29
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Re: Looking for a job after being a stay at home mother

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I have a big family with around three stay at home mothers ...
Are you a Mormon? Do your other wives work?

Anyway... my wife enrolled herself on a course (taught in German) to get a Swiss book-keeping qualification (if she does the second year it leads to an accountancy qualification).

Why not try doing the same where you live? In addition to the qualification which could lead to a job in itself, the benefits are it will improve your French, you'll learn the Swiss specific ways of doing things, it'll get you out of the house, and you'll meet new people.

With a Swiss qualification and your existing experience, you'll be more attractive to potential employers.
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Old 19.02.2015, 10:31
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Re: Looking for a job after being a stay at home mother

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You were a stay at home mother for 6 years and you didn't use the time to learn the local language? I'm not sure there was any more ideal time to be able to do this, you had a good amount of free time to study in-between looking after the kids.
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I speak French, not really great, but quite ok. German very basic.
It sounds like she did. She did not speak French when she arrived, but it looked like she did learn after a while. Why do people think that stay-at-home mums have plenty of free time! Looking after young children is a full-time job, and it is not that easy to learn a language whilst looking after them! Not unless we get iPads and TV to "babysit" them for us

I sympathise with you, OP. I think in a couple of years, I'll find myself in the same boat as you. I have already started thinking about that time, and that is why I am seriously learning German - ideally, I would like to reach level C. Is this something you can do as well to improve your French? You can take some semi-intensive courses at night (I attend the 8-10pm classes at Migros Klubschule two times a week), and that could also help you network a bit with the people who are in the same class.

If you are not great at networking in person, is it possible to network through Linked in? You can also get in touch with the colleagues from your previous posts, and take it from there.

I wish you all the best.
CM
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Old 19.02.2015, 10:39
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Re: Looking for a job after being a stay at home mother

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It sounds like she did. She did not speak French when she arrived, but it looked like she did learn after a while. Why do people think that stay-at-home mums have plenty of free time! Looking after young children is a full-time job, and it is not that easy to learn a language whilst looking after them! Not unless we get iPads and TV to "babysit" them for us CM
It is undoubtedly a demanding and tiring role that choosing to do demands huge respect for the sacrifices you make, but to say they don't have a few hours of free time a day would be stretching it a bit.
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Old 19.02.2015, 11:04
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Re: Looking for a job after being a stay at home mother

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but to say they don't have a few hours of free time a day would be stretching it a bit.
But practically speaking the few hours a day you talk of are usually after the kids have gone to bed. Mostly we get 10 mins here and there (and sorry that's reserved for EF ). To be honest these sporadic breaks are not sufficient for learning a language. Small children need attention all the time. Fact!

But also don't forget that not everyone can learn a language as easily. Learning a new language is not like doing a degree in something you are already familiar with or is in a language you already master. When I took time off to do a Masters, I had no problem studying, because the subject was familiar. But I have to say that I am having great difficulty with German now. I feel like I am 10 again, learning about grammar and conjugations, etc. It is learning everything from scratch and it takes much more concentration (and time) to be able to do it properly.
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Old 19.02.2015, 11:35
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Re: Looking for a job after being a stay at home mother

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I have a big family with around three stay at home mothers (and one single parent who is also a full-time teacher with two young kids) with a minimum of two kids each. It's not really accurate when anyone says they don't have free time when being a stay at home parent. I also know a stay at home father with two kids who did a degree and now runs a full-time business, and said if he didn't fill his day with stuff in-between looking after the kids, especially during the earlier years when they basically napped a ton, he got bored out of his mind.
.
Yes Richdog, and probably they all went through this phase while living in their country, speaking their language, having an old network of ex work colleagues, school mates and so on....
Anyway, it's so easy to say..oh, look it's because you didn't make the right choices, whereas others....well, others knew what to do and they're so much better off now...

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Hello,

Thank you for your replies.

To answer- I have a B permit. I come from second wave EU joining countries. Next year, thanks to my husband, I should get a C permit.
I speak French, not really great, but quite ok. German very basic.


miniMia mentioned networking- I am still one of the 'previous' generations, and it is really not in my character to approach someone just because I want something from the other person while I can not offer something in return.. I know I would have to change the attitude.

I hope for some luck one day !

Have a nice day!
Skyfly, you don't have to approach someone just because you want something from them, or "cultivate" only useful relations, just try to join groups of people who're meeting for workshops/discussions with the purpose of finding a job, expanding their professional network or just meet up for discussing about interesting themes in their field etc. I personally know a group like this but it is in Zürich. Have you searched for people from your native country? We (where I am from) have a few student/professional associations here. Don't dismiss any possibility...no matter how slim the chances of a good outcome might be.
Good luck!
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Old 19.02.2015, 11:37
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Re: Looking for a job after being a stay at home mother

I think the main problem is that no one speaks German here. For all the learning one does from a book, it is hard to find real life situations for practice.
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