Career shift from teaching to L&D

I've been working as a one-to-one music teacher for more than a decade and it's time for a career change. 

From what I have researched, I'd really like to move into L&D. Has anyone successfully made the shift from teaching (of any form) into L&D, and if so what route did you take? 

I'm planning to take CIPD level 5 in L&D but I'm horribly aware that I have never worked in an HR department.

Suggestions please!

  • Johanna

    | 0 Posts

    CIPD Staff

    23 Jan, 2023 12:14

    Hi Sue, I'm sure you could bring music into your L&D activities with organisations somewhere along the line - it's a great skill to have! While you wait for other Community members to help out, I don't know whether you've had chance to read up on this careers info on L&D professionals here from the CIPD? www.cipd.co.uk/.../learning-development-roles

  • Hi Sue,

    I've successfully made the shift from singing teacher to L&D so can confirm it is indeed possible!

    My route in was very scenic: from singing teaching I side-stepped into an entry-level college administrative role to gain a foothold in FE, as I thought I wanted to become a qualified FE teacher at the time. (Spoiler: I was wrong!) Through this role I found my way into FE apprenticeship recruitment then into in-house recruitment within the charity sector, working in the wider HR dept. After that I moved into an employee relations role in the NHS. I wanted more direction at this point in my career so reflected on all the HR/ER/recruitment/teaching experience I had and realised L&D was where I wanted to go. I landed my current role as an L&D Practitioner within an FE setting and I love it.

    I didn't have any formal L&D/HR qualifications but I did have a boat load of transferable skills and enthusiasm! I can speak only to my own experience of course but you will no doubt have similar transferable skills from your teaching - the ability to engage learners, recording and analysing their progress, designing and delivering tailored teaching solutions etc. - all which will stand you in good stead in L&D. Like you, I am planning to do my level 5 CIPD as well but in my experience not having it hasn't hindered me though it will be nice to consolidate my knowledge.

    If I were in your position now I would comb through the skills you've developed as a one-on-one teacher and go through L&D job adverts to find the similarities then use that to tailor your CV to your new direction. I would then try to find a junior or generalist role so I could gain a foothold in the L&D/HR function of an organisation that would be happy to develop me. You might find the organisation would be happy to put you through the CIPD themselves, saving you some cash. From there, you can develop your skills and knowledge and build connections to move into an L&D Coordinator or similar role, then continue to move up.

    Happy to connect if you want to chat to someone who's been in a similar position.

    Good luck with your career switch - it's exciting! :)
  • In reply to Alixandra:

    This a great example for those who doubt the career switch! Good luck to you!
  • Steve Bridger

    | 0 Posts

    Community Manager

    17 Apr, 2023 11:31

    In reply to Thomas:

    It is. Thank you,  !