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COVID-19: Time for a Career Change?

Get CIPD qualified with us and join the Acacia family!

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Discover why you should consider a career in Human Resources or Learning and Development. Plus read how 4 CIPD students made the move into HR and how studying for a CIPD qualification helped! 

With many of us having had a bit more time on our hands in recent months some people may have had thoughts about a change of career. If a career in Human Resources or Learning and Development takes your fancy, then taking an Acacia Learning CIPD accredited qualification may just help you do this. Fast and flexible with choices between live online classes in the evening, at the weekend or on weekdays and start dates throughout the year, you are not far away from the next step in your career.

Kate Hone did the CIPD Level 5 Diploma in HR with us while she was on maternity leave. She really enjoyed the course and has since been offered a new role in HR with a global company. She started the course hoping to make a career change from Public Relations to HR and her studies made her realise she was making the right choice. She was recommended to Acacia by the HR business partner at her previous employers. She had the benefit of learning from different tutors to get lots of different perspectives. They all shared one clear common message – the strategic importance of HR and the need to align it with business strategy.

Kate did most of the course face-to-face but finished it online because of Covid-19 and got used to that form of study finding it more interactive that she had imagined. A self-sponsoring student she would be interested in taking some other modules with us also. She welcomed the flexibility Acacia offered and really felt she learnt a lot.

Alice Toft studied her CIPD level 3 Learning and Development Diploma with us. She lives in Brighton and had wanted to take the course at her local college, but fortunately for us they kept postponing it through lack of numbers. She had a strong preference for face to face classroom sessions, so chose that at Acacia taking classes at GOSH in central London.

During the Coronavirus lockdown period, she reluctantly at first switched to online classes but was pleasantly surprised. Live online study has really been a saving grace for Alice as she now needs online delivery skills for her new job. She found the teaching style was relaxed and inclusive; she particularly developed a good rapport with her main tutor Janine who she found very engaging. She also had an early online class with Jay who gave her lots of confidence.

She was a self-funding student and feels that she has made a wise investment in her career. Apart from getting the qualification she feels the programme has given her additional writing and other study skills which she can put to good use. She thinks that one thing that helped her new job was that their HR team had taken Acacia qualifications at all three levels.

Once fully settled into her new role she hopes to take the Level 5 HR qualification to gain a greater understanding of her colleagues’ roles and the wider context of her new job. She fast tracked the course as she was not working at the start of her studies.

One advantage of choosing a career in HR or L&D is that these skills are needed as much in good times and bad. It is also easy to move between economic sectors so if your Industry has suffered through Covid-19 there will be others who will always need your services.

Bei Zhang decided to study in London for her CIPD Level 3 Diploma in HR Practice. After completing her diploma in just three months, she got her first job in HR. She has since decided to undertake a master’s at the prestigious Cass Business School to further her career in HR. She felt that our course gave her the study skills and confidence necessary to undertake this.


Read how Bei completed her CIPD Level 3 Diploma and landed her first HR job >

Natalie Armitage started her career in retail working at Greggs the UK’s leading bakery as a Retail Manager. At 26 she was inspired to switch career and study for a CIPD Human Resource qualification. Her first office job was with Kings College where she got promoted from an admin role into her first specialist HR position as OD Coordinator. She is now Case Consultant at Kings where she thoroughly enjoys managing a broad portfolio of employee relations cases including disciplinary, grievances, conduct, capability, whistleblowing, and employment tribunals. On a recent podcast we spoke to Natalie about switching careers, transferable skills and how gaining her CIPD qualification helped her to forge a successful career in HR. Read about her experience and advice on getting into HR.

Read about Natalie’s career change from retail to human resources >

Listen to our HR podcast on changing career >

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