Location: UK: Scotland (delivered virtually)

Dates: Various cohorts from May 2022 to February 2023, delivered during school hours

Programme: Return-to-Work Coaching, Skills Training and Mentoring Programme

Closing date for applications: Apply ASAP (limited places available)

*This programme is now full*

“This program was priceless and I’m truly grateful to have had this opportunity. It has propelled my work search and confidence in so many ways. The sharing of knowledge, encouragement and tools, is everything I needed to help me feel more prepared to return to work.” Career Boost Participant, 2022

Following the success of our Career Boost Programme in Q1 2022, we’re delighted to re-launch this fantastic free-of-charge support opportunity for Scottish women on career breaks of 6 months or more wanting to return to professional work. Benefit from tailored expert return-to-work coaching and skills training and connection with a like-minded peer group. Apply now as places are limited and will be allocated on a first come, first served basis (subject to eligibility)!

The Career Boost Coaching and Skills Training Programme forms part of our Career Boost Scotland Programme.

About the Career Boost Coaching & Skills Training Programme

We have designed this comprehensive Programme to provide tailored support to address your practical and psychological barriers to returning to work and to develop your job search skills to make you return-to-work ready! Through individual 1:1 discussions, we will work with you to understand what support you require to be ready for a return to professional level work, we will create your unique learning support plan and we will deliver tailored coaching and skills training modules, with the possibility of mentoring, to support you at each step of your journey,

The support will be delivered in 2-hour sessions, remotely via Zoom in small interactive groups, building a peer support network of like-minded individuals.

As the Programme is funded by the Scottish Government, there is no cost for attending but we do require your commitment to complete the programme and carry out a final evaluation.

How will I benefit?

The programme has been designed to work with you to determine what support you require to help you return to professional level work following your career break. Your framework of support will include a selection of the following:

Coaching Modules (delivered by Women Returners Expert Coaches)

  • Build your professional confidence
  • Develop an optimal return to work mindset
  • Clarify your career direction
  • Identify your key strengths

Skills Training Modules (delivered by Women Returners Expert Coaches, with support from Flexibility Works)

  • Understand how to write a compelling CV
  • Learn how to create (or refresh) your LinkedIn profile following a career break
  • Develop interview skills and know how to prepare for an interview
  • Develop networking skills
  • Create an action plan for your return to work
  • Learn about flexible working – the current trends and information you need to know


  • Receive mentoring support from an experienced professional

All participants will benefit from peer networking: meeting with other returners to create a return-to-work support network.

What can I expect?

Following acceptance onto the programme:

  • Successful applicants will have a 1:1 meeting to discuss your individual needs and how the programme can support your return to work (this could be a zoom meeting or telephone call)
  • Women Returners will create an individual learning support plan based on the results from your discussion
  • You’ll receive your learning support plan, which may include signposting to other elements of support available through Skills Development Scotland
  • You will attend a series of small group, interactive, online coaching and skills training workshops to support and accelerate your return to work
  • You will be introduced to your mentor (if applicable)

Following the programme, you will complete a self evaluation to reflect on the support you have received and the progress you made with your return to work.

Am I eligible?

To join our Career Boost Programme you must meet the criteria set by the Scottish Government Women Returners Fund. You must:

  • Identify as a woman
  • Be living in Scotland
  • Be over the age of 25
  • Have been on a career break for 6+ months and not in any paid work during this time (voluntary work is ok)
  • Have the right to work in the UK

Your career break could be for raising children, eldercare, redundancy, health, relocation, or any other reason.

Applications are particularly welcomed from women from longer career breaks, rural areas, ethnic backgrounds and older age groups in line with the Scottish Government target areas.

Our Programme is aimed at women who wish to return to professional level work in any sector.

What is the timeline?

The cohort dates are:

  • Register now to start coaching workshops in June/July 2022 (last workshop will be 6 July) Full
  • Register by August to start coaching workshops in September/November 2022 Full 
  • Register by October to start coaching workshops in January 2023 Full 

What is the application process?

Stage 1: Apply

We are now open for applications and places are limited!  To apply for the Career Boost Programme, please complete a short survey here to confirm your eligibility and fit for the programme. We will be reviewing applications regularly and will confirm your place in the programme within 2 weeks of your application. Places will be allocated on a first come, first served basis for those who meet the funding criteria above.

Stage 2: Assess

If you are successful, we send you an email to arrange your 1:1 discussion with our Programme Manager who will assess your individual needs and fit with our programme.


With any questions on the Career Boost Programme, please email us on careerboost@womenreturners.com

The Women Returners Programme is funded by the Scottish Government and administered by Skills Development Scotland.