Career action planning

What is career planning?

Career planning is a process for you to take control of your career and future direction. You can start now, whatever stage you are at, and – with updates along the way – a career plan can take you right through your working life. Career planning helps you to consider and address important questions.

  • How do I see my career developing?
  • What role am I interested in?
  • What skills do I need to do that job?
  • Where do I want to work?
  • How do I get there?

Why do I need a career action plan?

Having a career action plan helps you keep your career-related research and activities in one place, so you can keep track of everything. It helps you identify your next steps in your career and allows you to identify what you need to do to be successful in these steps; be that getting an internship or work experience, building skills, applying for a job, or figuring out how to get a promotion.

How to make a career plan

  1. Understand your current situation, your strengths and weaknesses, and options available to you. Research and decide on your goals. You may have a firm idea about a graduate job and employer, or perhaps you need to narrow down your options.
  2. Identify and plan what steps you need to take to achieve your objectives and when you need to do them. We recommend that you use a career action plan document to help.
  3. Complete the actions you set yourself.
  4. Review and reflect on what you have achieved, update your career action plan, then consider your future goals and next steps.

To develop a career action plan

Further resources

Explore your career options

Develop skills and confidence

For information about the Big Essex Award and Chart My Path contact:

Further support

For more information, advice, and support with career planning, email or visit to book an event or 1–1 appointment.

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Contact us
Colchester Campus Ground floor of the Silberrad Student Centre
Southend Campus The Info Point, second floor of The Forum