Data shows that 80% of UK workers will be open to new roles in 2023 writes Marni Baker Stein, Chief Content Officer at Coursera. And unsurprisingly, as the cost-of-living crisis continues to bite, a better salary is a key motivation for the majority of these jobseekers. 

However, in economically turbulent times, seeking a new career can feel risky, often something more acutely felt for women who can face additional barriers when it comes to career growth. Yet, progressing your career and building your earning potential doesn’t have to mean a leap of faith into the unknown.

In this article, Marni Baker Stein, Chief Content Officer at the global online learning provider Coursera, offers tips and insight into how you can ensure you receive equitable career growth opportunities through upskilling and reskilling, and how your next career move could be within your own company.

Identifying growth opportunities within your own business 

Whether through a promotion or moving into a new role within your company, your next career move could be closer than you think. In today’s rapidly changing market, the skills required to fulfill a role are constantly evolving.

The rapid onset of AI and automation is leaving many businesses grappling with how best to deploy technology in a way that complements rather than replaces the existing workforce. According to the McKinsey Global Institute, a staggering 375 million workers around the world (which is 14% of the global workforce) might need to transition to new occupations by 2030 to stay relevant. It’s clear that workers must start taking practical measures now in order to keep up with this rapid pace of change.

The onus is on the individual to stay up-to-date with the latest industry trends and look for areas to enhance their own skill set. Stay informed by following industry publications, participating in webinars or conferences, and connecting with networking groups.

Seek out projects or initiatives that naturally align with your interests and skills, be proactive and ask to take on new responsibilities or roles. Of course, take advantage of existing training and development programmes offered by your company, but also make a case for your employer to provide additional learning courses that will help you make that skills transition.

Upgrading your skills in the right way for you 

Learning new skills can be a significant time investment alongside existing work and personal commitments, so make sure you do this in a way that’s right for you.

Women who have caregiving responsibilities or other life circumstances that make attending in-person classes difficult may find that online learning is a more accessible choice. Online learning has become a lifeline for many women for whom in-person learning has not been possible. The World Economic Forum report shows that 60% of female caregivers would postpone studying or not study at all if online learning was not an option and 26% of women report they feel safer and more comfortable learning online.

The range of online courses and qualifications is extensive, from free courses on platforms like Coursera to professional certifications offered by industry leaders like Meta, Google, and AWS. Take your time exploring online courses and programs that align with your career goals and any skills you feel you’re missing. By investing in your professional development now, you’ll be setting yourself up for faster growth and long-term success.

Commit to a mindset of lifelong learning 

Technology is continuing to shake up the job market at an unprecedented rate and it’s likely this trend will continue for the foreseeable future. The only way to remain competitive is to continue to adapt and keep learning new skills. Thankfully, advancements in online learning mean that upskilling is now much more accessible, especially for women, who benefit from the increased flexibility.

Advancing your career doesn’t mean you have to change jobs. Whether you’re growing your skill set for now, or for future opportunities, don’t wait for the perfect time to start, take action today and commit to a mindset of lifelong learning. By upskilling yourself, you can seize new opportunities as they arise, be that in your current company or elsewhere.