Free Career Development Resources

Developing your career by obtaining advice and getting additional training is a great way to improve professionally and potentially secure a promotion.

However, the costs associated with most mentorships and training programs can be very high, making them difficult to attain. It can also be difficult to balance the additional training and research time with your work schedule. Therefore, free and online career development resources can be very beneficial.

There are many resources that you can access completely free of charge that can help you to achieve your professional goals. Many of these resources can be found online so you can get the training you need from the comfort of your own home. There are also online career sites that provide information about different career options and opportunities as well. As long as you know what to look for, you can find everything you need in order to advance in your career.

Training Resources at Your Job

You may be able to get additional training from your current job as many companies offer free training to their employees to help them improve. This “in-house” training is an investment on the part of the company as they are ensuring that their employees learn skills that will help them to do better at their jobs. The training offered will vary greatly depending on the company and your position.

Contact your manager to inquire about whether additional training opportunities are available and to learn how to get started. Free training offered by your company is a resource you should take advantage of as the information will be tailored to the exact skills you need in your workplace. Taking interest and participating in the training also makes a good impression on your employer as it shows that you are taking the initiative to improve your skills.

Online Training Resources

If your employer does not offer in house training, you may want to consider looking into free resources offered online. This may also be a good option for you if you would prefer to take courses at home. There are many online courses available that can help you improve the skills you need for your career, and many of them are completely free as well.

Also, keep in mind that your company may offer to pay for certain training if they do not offer it themselves. Contact your manager to see if that is an option.

Most career advancement or training websites offer a variety of different classes, and most have free options in addition to options that cost money. A few of the best sites that provide good options are as follows:

  • ALISON – This site has free courses in a variety of different topics, including marketing, languages and more. You can even earn certificates and diplomas when you complete the training.
  • Coursera – You can find courses in business-related subjects such as marketing and sales plus courses teaching technical subjects like computer programming.
  • EdX – This resource provides you with online courses from many top universities, including Harvard and Berkley. You can learn in-demand skills that can drastically help you in your career.
  • MIT OpenCourseWare – The Massachusetts Institute of Technology provides access to a variety of different courses with topics ranging from introductory computer science to the principles of microeconomics.
  • The Muse – The Muse helps you on your way to success by allowing you to browse jobs and get career advice and coaching as well.
  • Udemy – This site is highly recommended and provides many useful courses. You can learn anything from personal development and photography to marketing and music.
  • University websites – Many universities in the United States offer free online courses that you can participate in. Simply visit the university’s online learning center to see what is available currently.  

Resources for Career Advice

One of the most important resources you can have is correct information, especially when you are interested in advancing in your career.

If you are aware of the specific qualifications you need for a position or the hiring statistics in the industry of your choice, you can have a big advantage when you apply for the new job or request a promotion. You may be able to learn some of this valuable information from a mentor but accessing this information through official sources can be more credible.

These sources can provide answers to all of your questions about career moves, applying for new jobs, getting a promotion and much more. A few of the best resources for career advice include:

  • American Job Centers – These centers are based in each U.S. state, but follow similar nationwide procedures. They offer career advice, job listings and training resources.
  • CareerOneStop – This website can help you find a job and even offers career assessments so that you can look at some of the best options for you. There is also a lot of information available including tips on networking, interviewing, writing resumes and more.
  • My Next Move – You can learn more about various career options through this resource. Also, if you are a veteran, the site also has a section dedicated helping you find a civilian career that is similar to your military job.
  • NCDA – The National Career Development Association provides training programs in addition to information on hiring trends and job search advice. Also, you can easily find an NCDA member in your area that can help you meet your career goals.
  • The Bureau of Labor Statistics – This site provides visitors with accurate and up to date information about current salaries, hiring prospects and even the type of training you will need for any career choice.

Mentoring

A mentor is someone with experience and success in a particular field that you can speak with and learn from. He or she can answer your questions and offer feedback and advice about your goals and strategies. Mentorship is a very useful method for career assistance as you can learn from someone who has been in your place before.

The company you work for may offer a mentorship program. Otherwise, you can find a mentor on your own. This may be someone at your company or a business contact whom you can develop a professional relationship with and learn from.