If you’ve recently retired or that time is fast approaching, then you may have considered whether a traditional retirement is right for you. In 2018, the vast majority of the UK’s employment growth was fuelled by the over 50s (82%). So, it’s perhaps unsurprising that we often hear from members who have swapped the tradition of “winding down” for a change of direction instead.
There may be many reasons why you’re considering working into retirement – with the rising state pension age being a driving force for many. For others, it can be the desire to learn something new, meet some new people and/or gain satisfaction by making a difference. Whatever your reasons, the good news is that there are plenty of roles out there that could help you unlock a new and exciting life chapter!
With that said, here are 10 jobs that are popular with retirees.
1. Dog Walker
Keen to set tails wagging? Dog walking is a fun and flexible role for people looking to get outdoors and hang out with some furry companions. It’s highly likely that wherever you live, there’ll be dogs that need walking – it’s just a case of finding and meeting them.
There are several ways you can start walking dogs professionally. You may be able to build up a local client base through word of mouth, leaflet dropping, or advertising on community notice boards. If you don’t want to spend time finding your own clients, you can also sign up to dog walking websites like Tailster, where you’ll be able to connect with dog owners in your local area.
Ready to get walking?
2. Patient Transport Driver
Driving a patient transport ambulance can be a fulfilling role for those who love driving and are passionate about making a difference to others. Many of us take the things that we’re used to doing and can do easily – for example, attending medical appointments – for granted. But it’s not that easy for everyone, which is where a Patient Transport Driver steps in.
Their role is to get non-emergency patients to and from the hospital or clinic where they’re receiving treatment, whilst looking after their safety and comfort. As a Patient Transport Driver, people will be at the centre of everything you do, so it’s important that you can find reward in caring for others.
There’s usually a variety of shifts available because they’ll be people requiring transport from early morning through to late evening on any given day of the week. So if flexibility is on your list of must-haves, then this role could be for you!
One of our members, Kim, left her high-powered job to become a Patient Transport Driver…
Or want to start searching for roles?
Want to make the most of your skills and work experience? Consulting is an attractive prospect for many retired professionals who have spent years in a corporate environment building up valuable knowledge and experience. Consultants simply exchange their knowledge for money and may work on a part or full-time basis.
Most Consultants are self-employed but may have several regular clients who get in touch as and when needed – for example, to help map out a marketing strategy for the year. Consulting is a great option for businesses as they gain access to specialist knowledge and advice without them having to take on an expensive full-time employee.
4. Film and TV extra
If you like the idea of being on the TV – even just for a minute or two – then you could consider working as a film or TV extra. This is a popular role because it offers the opportunity to try something a bit different and you could end up being a passer-by in the street in Emmerdale or a patient in the background in Casualty!
Film sets can be exciting places to work because you’ll get to meet people from all walks of life and learn how some of your favourite TV shows and films are made. Casting agencies are always on the lookout for people of all ages and backgrounds to reflect real-life communities, so why not give it a go?
The following casting agencies recruit extras from around the country…
5. Youth Worker
Youth Workers usually work with 11-25-year-olds who are having a tough time due to circumstances like substance abuse, bereavement or crime and have become cast adrift from their community. They support their social, personal, and emotional development to help them achieve their full potential and find their place in society.
While life experience alone isn’t enough to become a good Youth Worker, it can give you an advantage. Many Youth Workers have been through very trying times themselves, come out the other side, and now want to help others do the same.
To find out which routes you could take to become a qualified Youth Worker, check out our full career change guide below.
If you’re a green-fingered individual who loves to be out in the fresh air surrounded by nature, then you could enjoy a new career as a Gardener. Daily gardening tasks typically include clearing overgrown spaces, planting bulbs, and pruning bushes.
Gardeners not only create beautiful outdoor spaces, but they maintain them too. Over the years, the benefits of gardening for mental and physical health have been well documented and include reduced stress levels, improved balance and flexibility, and a stronger heart.
If you have gardening experience (which could include gardening for friends or family), then you could work on a self-employed basis – offering your services to local people. Or, employers like the National Trust often hire Gardeners to work in a range of outdoor spaces across the country.
Tutoring is an extremely rewarding profession that will allow you to give back to the community – plus it usually has a great hourly rate, with private Tutors earning anything between £20 and £40 per hour. Many Tutors say that they enjoy the experience of being able to see students grow in confidence as their learning develops.
No matter what subject you’re interested in, there’s sure to be someone who needs to be tutored in it – so it’s up to you to choose what you want to teach and at what level. Perhaps you have relevant qualifications in your subject area, or have built up substantial knowledge through other means – e.g. work experience or learning about it as a hobby.
Tutoring hours are flexible, so it’s up to you how little or how much work you decide to take on. Websites such as Tutorful and Tutorfair will give you all the information you can get started as a tutor both on and offline.
Ready to sign up as a tutor?
Or interested in completing a qualification to help you become a tutor?
Looking for an un-beelievably interesting job option? If you love the great outdoors and have an interest in nature’s fuzzy, hardworking little creatures, then Beekeeping could be just the role for you! Beekeepers look after bees and their hives by providing them with everything they need to be able to produce honey and pollinate plants. They may also feed bees, replace queen bees when they die, and construct hives.
Beekeeping often starts as a hobby for many people with a lot of learning on the job. It can help to take a short online course to build up your skills and knowledge, as well as joining the British Beekeeping Association (BBKA), who can give you lots of advice and guidance on how to get started as a Beekeeper.
Once you’re more comfortable in the role, you’ll be able to start making a profit by selling honey, royal jelly, and beeswax. You may also be able to start a bee collection service, where you will visit people’s homes when called and remove bees nests for them.
What better way to gain a fresh perspective on life than to get in touch with your inner child? Nannies hold a privileged position in a families’ lives because they are trusted to look after children in their family home whilst their parents or carers are away or at work.
Because this position is based so heavily on trust, hiring families will often be more interested in your interpersonal skills (such as patience and good communication skills) and your real-life experience of caring for children, than your paper qualifications.
To find out more about becoming a Nanny, you can read out full ‘how to’ guide.
10. Driving Instructor
If you love driving and would love to help others do the same, then why not retrain as a Driving Instructor? Driving Instructors work with people of all ages; helping them to develop their skills and confidence in the car.
People take lessons with a Driving Instructor at different points in their driving journey – some will have never sat in the driver’s seat before, while others may have already passed their test but just want to brush up their skills. Every student’s journey will be unique, but it will be you who helps them reach their destination safely!
Find out more about how to get started in this highly rewarding role…
Getting started with your job search
Now that you’ve had the chance to consider a few new ideas, you might be wondering exactly how to get started on your next adventure. In order to give yourself the best chance at landing the role you want, it can help to come up with a carefully considered plan. You may find the following steps useful in doing so:
- Think carefully about what career or job you’d like to set your sights on.
- Do as much research as you can about the industry that you’d like to work in.
- Consider the financial impact and associated consequences of making a career change.
- Draw on your existing network and speak to anyone who works in the role or industry that you’re interested in. Our guide to networking has some helpful tips.
- Focus on your strengths and transferable skills.
- Refresh your CV and cover letter to highlight the skills most relevant to your new career path. Take a look at our CV writing tips or cover letter writing tips for more help on how to get started.
- Consider creating a LinkedIn profile to make your online presence known in the professional world. Our handy guide will show you how to maximise your LinkedIn profile.
- Brush up your skills or learn new ones.
- Start applying for jobs!
Starting a new life chapter...
Trying something new can be scary, but it can also be very exciting. Some of the best things in life often happen when you’re prepared to step outside of your comfort zone and with many active years ahead of you, it’s never too late to find a rewarding new job or career.
The knowledge and experience that you have built up over the years will stand you in good stead for your next opportunity and make you a very attractive prospect to future employers. So what are you waiting for?
Have you recently made a career change? What are your reasons for working into retirement? Join the conversation over on the Rest Less community forum, or leave a comment below.