Sunday, July 14, 2024
HomeLearnWhat to do if you have no idea what your career options...

What to do if you have no idea what your career options are

Sian Prigg is a career coach and learning and development consultant from Wales.

“There are so many different options. Where do I begin?”

In the ever-changing world of careers I look at four options you could consider after your exams.

The world of careers and the options available can feel like a minefield.

What career option is best for you? You need to consider your strengths, your situation… there is so much to think about.

This is one of the areas that I help a lot of young women with, exploring the possible options.

Read more: How do I decide what to do with my life?

The list is endless, but let’s start with the four most common options.

Get a job

This is often an overlooked option because we assume that more education is what will make us successful.

This isn’t always the case.

For some people and some professions, getting a job and learning while you work is the best way to start your career.

In order to look for a job you will need a CV and have an idea about what jobs you would like.

If you are struggling with this, recruitment services will help guide you or give me a shout.

You can find more information on how to write a CV here.

Gap year

The pressure to go to university may seem high for you once you have left school, but it’s much wiser to try not to give into that pressure and take your time before deciding on what you will do next.

Don’t feel like you need to rush to go to university. It’s crucial you take the time to weigh up the various and plentiful options.

A gap year can also give you amazing life skills and work experience that will set you apart. It’s not just about holidays and booze.

Whether you want to travel the world and explore the array of cultures out there, learn a new language, get a job to earn some money or gain some valuable work experience, the options are endless.

University is expensive, and you do not want to end up regretting your decision once you’ve enrolled.

More ideas about how you can use your Gap Year effectively can be found here.


There are some excellent apprenticeships around. It’s not just if you want to be a mechanic that an apprenticeship is good for anymore.

You can do an apprenticeship after your A-levels.

Apprenticeships come in different levels, and you can do a Higher Apprenticeship if you have A-levels and you’re not going to university.

A Higher Apprenticeship could be a good next step for you if you don’t want to choose between a job or a degree.

You will get training (resulting in an industry-recognised qualification) while earning a salary and getting real-life work experience on your CV at the same time.

With a Higher Apprenticeship, there are no degree fees to pay, so it’s a very realistic way to pack in the learning without getting into student debt.

Entry requirements for apprenticeships in the UK will vary depending on your chosen field of work and study.

More information on Apprenticeships can be found here.


You may decide that university is the best next step.

There are thousands of different options. You can apply for a range of degrees that best suit your interests and level of learning. For example, it could be a foundation degree to give you a strong grounding in a particular academic or professional area.

If you do study for a degree, make sure you research location, student fees and the degree modules carefully to find the best fit.

You will also need to consider entry requirements, to ensure you study relevant topics at school and achieve qualifications at a grade which meet entry requirements.

But remember, it is about more than just grades.

If A-level results day doesn’t bring the results you expected or hoped for to get you into your first choice of university, it is not over. There is still clearing.

Some degrees are designed to be a strong launch pad for entry into a particular career.

It is absolutely worth exploring summer work placements with employers while studying, or sandwich degrees which last a little longer but come with a year of paid work, experience, skills development and relationship building with particular employers.

This can help set you apart after your degree.

More information to help you make the right university decision can be found here.

What now?

If you are still feeling lost and not knowing which way to go, it may be that career coaching would be worthwhile to help you uncover the options in order to make a brave and informed decision.

If this sounds like you book a free call with me to find out how I can help you Start Sooner making brave, informed career decisions.

For more information on the services offered visit my website to see how I can help, or email me directly

Good Luck!


Charlotte Harding
Charlotte Harding
Charlotte is a journalist and the co-founder of The Women's Work Collective.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Most Popular

Recent Comments