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Food for thought in marketing shift

Published on Friday, 15 Mar 2013
Mark Enticott

After graduating from university with a marketing degree, I found a job as a quality technician in the food sector. Although I want to remain in the F&B industry, I want to work in marketing. Is it possible to easily find a marketing job when I don't have any relevant work experience? Kwan

It is not uncommon for people to want to change careers. This can be a difficult period, though, and you need to be prepared to have some setbacks as you attempt to move into a marketing role.

First, you need to assess why you believe marketing is the right career for you and make sure you know what this career entails. You therefore have to do your due diligence and compare it to your own self-assessment to ensure you have made the right choice.

The next step is more difficult, because a lot of employers prefer people with prior marketing experience. One option is to see if your current company is open to moving you into a marketing role via internal transfer, even though you do not have the right skill set.

The second option is to apply directly to companies and talk to specialised recruitment consultants to identify junior-level marketing roles. Entering such roles will depend on the amount of general work experience you already have. If you have a lot, an employer might be concerned as to why you want to take a step down in pay and responsibility, and whether you will adapt to such a change.

A change in career is a very big decision and it comes at an opportunity cost to your current career. Ultimately, though, if you are passionate, driven and persistent, an opportunity will present itself.

Mark Enticott is the managing director of Ambition Hong Kong, a leading global boutique recruitment firm with offices in Hong Kong, Singapore, Australia and London. Ambition specialises in the banking and financial services, finance and accounting, technology, and sales and marketing sectors.

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