Success Story: Naga Vijaya Lakshmi Ijjada

Naga Vijaya Lakshmi Ijjada took a 12-year break from her career in tech when health issues coincided with a family move from India to the US. However, Naga always intended to return to her career. “I love to work and I love to code, so I couldn’t just give it up,” she says. 

When she started her job search, Naga soon realized that it would be difficult to find a suitable role. “After a career gap of 12 years, I didn’t see any opportunities,” she recounted. While she job searched, Naga refreshed her coding skills through practice and watching videos on YouTube and LinkedIn. 

Naga then decided to try looking for resources for career returners like herself. “I just started googling, ‘How to reenter your career,’ and that opened a whole new path of returnships.” She applied for and was accepted into a Spring 2022 returnship at Allstate in the rapid product delivery area. The support she received from her manager, mentor, and teammates helped smooth her transition back into the workforce. 

“On day one, when I started the training, I was so confused,” Naga admits. “Will I be able to make it? Will I be able to get back into work just like these people? But day-by-day, my confidence increased. I got introduced to the team and my manager and mentor and it became easier because of the support they gave. Now I feel like I’ve started a second life.” 

Naga was converted into a full-time position after her returnship ended, and says that Allstate gave her the chance she needed to prove herself — and to succeed.

“[Returners] have the talent. If you give us a little bit of a push and an opportunity, we have a lot of passion to get back to work,” Naga says. “I want to prove myself — that feeling gets stronger and stronger day by day. When you reenter, you feel so loyal. It’s a good choice for team leaders and managers.”

Naga Vijaya Lakshmi Ijjada’s story was originally published in Employee Benefit News.