Re: Advice for someone re-entering the work force

Subject: Re: Advice for someone re-entering the work force
From: "Gene Kim-Eng" <techwr -at- genek -dot- com>
To: "Mary Headley" <mkheadley80503 -at- yahoo -dot- com>, <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 20 Aug 2008 18:40:23 -0700

I can't speak on the Denver job market, but as a technical
publications manager I would consider someone with a
20-year absence from the workplace who has not done
anything on the side to maintain current knowledge and
skills in the profession to be unemployable. In order to
become qualified for a "good-paying technical writing job"
in any company I manage writing for, this person is going
to need a couple of years of formal reeducation and about
five years of experience starting over again from entry level.

Feel free to pass this assessment and my email address
on to any divorce attorney or judge who might be interested
in discussing it further.

Gene Kim-Eng

----- Original Message -----
From: "Mary Headley" <mkheadley80503 -at- yahoo -dot- com>
To: <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Sent: Wednesday, August 20, 2008 10:02 AM
Subject: Advice for someone re-entering the work force

> Hello,
> A friend who I used to work when we were both technical writers has asked for
> advice about re-entering the work force after 20 years . My friend hasn't had
> paid employment since 1987, when she quit working to raise her children,
> although she has done a variety of volunteer work for churches, schools, and
> several social service agencies. She has done no writing since then other than
> the occasional letter. She has not kept her computer skills up-to-date,
> although she knows the basics of using Word. She is in her mid-50s and has a
> master's in communications.
> Because of a pending divorce, she has been told by her husband's attorney that
> she could easily find a good-paying technical writing job in the Denver area,
> although she may have to start at a lower level than she was in 1987. The
> expectation from her soon-to-be ex (who is look to avoid paying any kind of
> spousal support, even though he's rich) is that it would be both easy and
> profitable for her to find a technical writing job again.
> Does anyone have any feel for how easy it might be for someone in this
> situation to find a technical writing job in today's market? If so, what range
> of salary might she expect? What kind of positions or companies would it make
> sense for her to target? My friend has gray hair and uses a hearing aid. How
> much "ageism" is she likely to encounter in this field? Would it perhaps make
> more sense for her to try to parlay her volunteer work for social service
> agencies into work in that area?
> I'm thinking she should take some classes in MS Office (Word, Office,
> PowerPoint) at a minimum. Are there other classes you think are critical? (She
> doesn't have a lot of time or money to spend on more education.)
> Any thoughts or perspective you can share would be much appreciated, as I'm
> pretty biased in this situation.
> Thanks,
> Mary


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Advice for someone re-entering the work force: From: Mary Headley

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