With 11 years experience in the Civil & Structural industry, Anwesha had a 2 year career break before completing a MSc in Civil Engineering.
Anwesha joined Wates Group in September 2022 as a Bid Manager.
What is your working background? If you like tell us about your career break.
Back in India, I used to work as civil design engineer and had 11 years of experience in designing different structures of steel and power plants. But when I moved to the UK, I decided to slow down to take care of my baby girl. She was born in a house with her grandparents and aunties in India. But in the unfamiliar environment of new country and new house she only had her parents. So, I decided to take a break from my career to settle her down. In 2019, when she started school and was confident enough to be around with other people, I started to look for jobs and ways to begin a new chapter of my career. Meanwhile, I also started a course to achieve a master’s degree in civil engineering.
What barriers have you faced when applying for roles?
When I started to apply for roles, I felt it was difficult to reach the employers/ recruiters. I applied through LinkedIn and other job sites. Most of the time I got reply that they saved my resume for future reference. I talked to some of the recruitment agencies where I got the reply that my resume is good, but they didn’t have any suitable role for me. It was tricky to secure a further chance of interview as I didn’t have prior UK experience.
How did STEM Returners help?
To me, STEM Returners acted as the missing link between me and employers. They showed confidence in my abilities and experience. They connected me to their different partner companies who are willing to provide opportunities to candidates like me. STEM Returners helped me to look for a role with work life balance.
What was the end result?
With the assurance and encouragement from STEM Returners, I got a satisfactory and prospective job in a well-established company like Wates Construction.
How has this changed your career?
There was a point when I started to feel that it was tough to get a suitable role after a career break. But with the help and connection of STEM Returners I am now able to put forward my career. In my new role, I have started to gain insights of UK construction industry and the features of building services. Hopefully, I will pick up new skills along the way which will help me further advancement of my career.
What would you say about the programme overall?
I think this programme is a fantastic opportunity for people who have had a career break. There are certain circumstances in people’s life where they need to interrupt their professional life in order to take care other things such as family life, health etc. But that doesn’t mean the end of their career. This programme provides hope to those people and their career betterment. It is also a great chance for those people who don’t have UK specific experience, but enthusiastic to achieve the same.
Do you have any advice for returners like yourself?
I would say don’t give up. You have the relevant skills and experience. All you need is a perfect opportunity which you will get in due course. In the meantime, enrol yourself in a training or academic course. Be prepared and try to arrange your other responsibilities in a such a manner so that when your dream role comes you can go forward without interruption. Best of luck.