It is not uncommon for people to change careers. Yet switching careers isn’t for everyone. And for those who do, challenges range from a lack of relevant experience to being overqualified for beginner profiles (given one already has certain years of experience).
People change careers for a range of reasons. Often, these go beyond the potential of a promotion or pay increase.
Recrafting the job narrative turns out to be a key challenge for many career changers. Finding the right employer, who supports your ambitions and can look beyond your past work while focusing on what you bring to the table, is a challenge.
About 21% of the workable population in the USA cites an interest in a different field as one of the main factors to switch. That is 1 in every 5th person of their working population.
Changing the narrative
When I first joined OpenSense Labs, I was amazed to know Vinit Kumar’s story. Then I met Sagar, Karishma, and Vidya.
All of my amazing co-workers come from unconventional backgrounds that were unique and remotely related to the roles that they later joined in.
Meet the members of #TeamOpenSenseLabs breaking the ceiling.
"My interview at OpenSense Labs was a breath of fresh air” Aruna Dhyani, Content Marketing Intern
I was a Talent Acquisition Specialist. While the role of a TA is crucial to any organization’s success, after 6 years, my growth & learning had reached stagnation.
My career switch journey as a fresher, with 6 years of experience, all over again was filled with excitement & lots of rejections.
I had good negotiation, writing, and reporting skills, all of which were often overlooked.
I remember, how in more than one case, I was rejected for lack of experience in writing (roles that required 0-1 years of experience).
I was disappointed but tried to understand the reason since I am aware that the expectations to find the perfect candidate is tremendous.
When I interviewed for the internship at OpenSense Labs, I was impressed with the transparency & expectations. In the entire process, whenever my past experience was mentioned, it focused on my capabilities.
The interview process at OpenSense Labs revolved around my learnings from the Digital Marketing course and scenario-based questions with a short writing assessment during the interview. I was selected based on my skills & merit.
My interview here was a breath of fresh air.
It has been 4 awesome months. Not only have I worked on different content types but I have also started to explore marketing trends and dynamics important to sustain a business. The learning curve was steep, but I have since shown improvement.
Every day I am working with a diverse set of individuals, learning something new. I have improved my writing skills along with practical knowledge of marketing tools like SEMRush, Google Analytics, JIRA, & Content Management Systems.
Working with Akshita, I have learned to work in an agile environment minus burnout.
When I set out, I wanted to be a Content Writer but currently, I am learning the dynamics of full-stack marketing.
"Rare to find companies invested in staff growth. 'It' factor for joining OpenSense Labs" Karishma Bisht, People Operations Manager
I joined Air India as a flying crew in 2018. Air India is a flag carrier and one of the most prestigious airlines in India.
A career in aviation is fascinating to a lot of youngsters. And it should be. Tell me which industry would get you international exposure as a fresher at a competitive salary.
I loved what I was doing. But it wasn’t enough to keep me going.
The work timings were not consistent and it negatively affected my health.
My people skills improved tremendously during my tenure at Air India, which brought me the confidence to go back to Human Resource Management as a career.
I was confident that I would get through any interview. It was surprising to find out that I wasn't shortlisted for any of the places I had applied to.
I started to reach out to people over Linkedin. Actually, all Founder-level people of a company whenever I came across any HR openings. I had atleast reached out to 30 folks before Vidhatanand responded to my message.
Post that everything happened in the blink of an eye. The interview process was very smooth.
All but the last round happened face-to-face. I could showcase my abilities and Danish communicated the role's expectations.
It was when I had my final interview with Vid, that I decided to join the team.
He had my career path prepared for me. On one hand, I was not shortlisted because of my aviation experience & here, he was talking about my career success.
It is very rare to find companies so invested in employee growth, for me that was the 'it' factor to joining OpenSense Labs.
Today, I am leading People Operations and contributing to OpenSense Labs' success.
"It was empathy from everyone on the team, that made a difference to my career" Vidya Roy, Associate Software Developer
I graduated with B.Sc. Botany Hons. and had no plans to become a software developer. My passion lay in Madhubani & Rajasthani painting, and I wanted to showcase and sell my artwork on a website of my own. However, I was not technically inclined and was scared of coding and everything technical.
I wanted to build a website to sell my paintings and artwork, but I was short on resources. I started learning HTML, CSS, & PHP from Youtube and blogs online.
Pritam suggested I hone my skills and apply for an internship at OpenSense Labs. My first technical round didn’t go as expected. I realized I was underprepared. In fact, later I got to know that my score was just above passing marks.
I was given a second chance with another round of technical interview. Realizing this was a second opportunity for me, I prepared hard and was finally selected after another non-technical round.
I learned a lot in my six months of internship.
Meenakshi & Shweta were my first mentor. They were very strict with coding standards. Looking back, they helped me a lot with my learning. Because of their standards, I had to put in a lot of effort to be prepared to answer them. This also helped me improve a lot on my communication skills.
Working with Sagar, I learnt more about front-end development, how to plan and share deliverable estimates while maintaining good work ethics.
Today, I would rate myself 8/10 in theming. I am currently working on ideas for my website.
When I moved from painting to software it was challenging and sometimes overwhelming. I had to learn new skills and adjust to the work environment, while also learning how to build relationships with colleagues and managers.
I believe it was empathy from everyone on the team, that made a huge difference in my career.
“As team lead, I help my juniors see things from an easier perspective” Sagar, Senior Software Developer
I started DJ-ing after college. In fact, I met Vidhatanand in the club I was DJ-ing, and we became friends, then. He invited me to his office to learn coding as a side hustle during the day.
Everything was new, and it was difficult to keep up with the fast-paced environment. But I persevered and continued to learn from my colleagues and mentors.
I joined full-time as a Frontend Developer after 5 months of internship.
As a team lead, I make sure to chill out my juniors when they feel overwhelmed, help them analyze problems, and see things from an easier perspective. It's been a humbling experience, and I've come to realize that you're always learning, even when you're teaching someone else.
Working in development has opened up a world of opportunities for me. I have had the chance to work on exciting projects and collaborate with talented individuals. And I owe much of my success to my seniors like Vinit, who supported me and helped me develop the skills that have brought me to where I am today.
Overall, my journey from DJ to a developer has been a challenging one, but it has taught me valuable lessons about perseverance and empathy most importantly. If you are a self-starter and willing to work hard, there are ample opportunities, I encourage anyone with a passion and will to pursue their dreams.
I am excited about the future and the many opportunities that lay ahead.
These stories are a testament to the fact that OpenSense Labs is a place where people have rediscovered their career aspirations & found a conducive environment to nurture their skills and talents.
Here it's not just about building great Drupal solutions, it's about creating a workplace where people can thrive and achieve their full potential.
Looking for a career change and want to be a part of a dynamic team? Send us your resume at [email protected].