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Your working life

Re-training for a new career

Re-training for a new career is another option you may wish to consider.  There are several established employment sectors in Southend – for example health & social care, construction, hospitality and tourism.  The borough also has increasing numbers of jobs in growing sectors such as arts and culture, engineering and manufacturing. 

Retraining can take many forms - short courses lasting just a few weeks, longer courses of a year or more, or even apprenticeships so you can earn while you learn.

Construction Jobs

If you would like to retrain for a career in construction you should look at the SECTA - South Essex Construction Training Academy.  SECTA is a government-funded training academy that is working to boost construction skills across multiple academies in South Essex. From careers advice and employability to hands-on training and real-world experience, SECTA creates action plans tailored to your aspirations and support needs. 

Working in construction is about much more than bricks and mortar, construction is a hugely varied industry - 50% of construction roles are office based in design, admin, management and IT.

More information about SECTA can be found on their website if you think that a career in construction might be for you please contact Kirstie Forrester on 07747202303 who is on hand to speak to people from Southend, Basildon, Castle Point, Rochford, Thurrock or Brentwood or email

Health & Social Care Jobs

If you are interested in a career in health and care then a Preparation for Care course could be the first step towards a new job.  Run over three to four weeks the course provides essential skills, access to live vacancies and a guaranteed interview on course completion.  Care workers are in high demand in and around Southend, and roles are very varied - no two days will be the same,  For more information about the course and for more information about a job in the care industry please email Amir Girnary or call him on 01702 212743.

Southend Adult & Community College

Southend Adult & Community College (SACC) offer a wide range of training opportunities that could help you find a new job.  Vocational training is currently available in the following areas:

  • AAT Accountancy
  • Assessor & Internal Quality Assurer
  • Business Administration
  • Childcare
  • Counselling
  • Health & Social Care
  • Management & Leadership
  • Teaching Assistant
  • Teaching
  • Working with Children

More information can be found on the SACC website

If you would like more information and are an employer based in Southend and the surrounding areas looking for training please email Julia Walker or call 01702 445700.

For individuals looking for Information, Advice and Guidance about next steps -  careers advice, support to find work or retraining please email Linda Wagstaff  or call on 01702 445700

South Essex College

South Essex College offers courses for adults and like SACC uses a range of learning options, face-to-face, blended and e-learning.  The college has a wide adult learning offer from vocational courses to GCSEs and offers university level qualifications.  More information about the offer to adults can be found here on their website

University of Essex

The University of Essex has campuses in Southend, Colchester and Loughton and can also support retraining for a career change.  You could choose from short courses in business and care or a summer school or go into higher level education to gain a graduate or post graduate degree.  More information can be found on the universities website 


Apprenticeships are not just for young people, they can help adults gain new skills and earn while they learn.  Apprenticeships range from entry to postgraduate level and cover a wide range of skills sets -they offer a real opportunity to use your transferable skills to enter a new career pathway.

Apprentice roles are advertised in the same way as other job opportunities – you can find out about apprenticeship opportunities nationwide using the National Apprenticeship Service Portal that can be found on this website

Support for parents with young children

If you live in Southend in Milton, Westborough, Victoria, Shoeburyness, West Shoebury, Kursaal wards then you can access support through A Better Start Southend (ABSS) a Lottery funded programme which supports the parents of children aged 0 – 4.   A Better Start Southend offers a range of opportunities from CV advice and interview skills support to mentoring and visits with employers.  If you live in these wards, have children under 4 and would like to understand how this project can help you please contact please email Amir Girnary or call him on 01702 212743.

Free Online Courses with Coursera

South East Local Enterprise Partnership has partnered with Coursera to offer 10,000 users to take up online training via Coursera's 4000+ courses. Courses cover a whole range of skills including essential IT skills, programming, chairing meetings, business planning, using statistics, presentation skills and writing for business to name but a few.  You need to begin a course by the end of September 2020 and complete by the end of December 2020 to get it for free.

More information is available via their website