Marcia Hultman

Cabinet Secretary

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Career Exploration

By working forty hours a week for fifty-two weeks a year from the age of 18 until the age of 62, someone will have worked a total of 91,520 hours in their lifetime. Considering a significant part of our life is spent working, it is important to enjoy the work we do. Studies show doing work we enjoy can be linked to increased motivation, strong mental health and a sense of fulfillment. Exploring careers prior to investing time and money can provide reassurance you are spending your life on work that is meaningful to you.

DLR here to help

Whether you are new to the workforce or looking for a change, the Department of Labor and Regulation (DLR) can assist with your Career Exploration.

What occupations fit your interests?

Answer a few questions using the South Dakota Career Interest Survey or the O*Net Interest Profiler in MyNextMove to learn what you like to do and don’t like to do. Your responses will help determine your interests based on the following categories: Realistic, Investigative, Artistic, Social, Enterprising and Conventional.

How can I use my current skill in a different occupation?

The mySkills myFuture website hosted by the U.S. Department of Labor that helps you identify your current skill set and find occupations with similar skill sets.

How much money do I need?

Learn how much you need to make to support your current lifestyle or the lifestyle you hope to attain by having a Reality Check. This online tool provides you with the price of basics living costs for various regions across South Dakota. Understanding the price associated with the lifestyle you are envisioning, you can search occupations predicted to offer wages to support this lifestyle.

Explore those occupations

By understanding your work interest profile, you can learn more about the skills, education needed, job projection and wages of the occupation you are interested in by using O*NET OnLine.

Our Department's Labor Market Information Center provides additional resources as you explore career possibilities, including a number of publications related specifically to career exploration and planning.

Hot Careers in South Dakota are those that are projected to be high demand and currently have higher-than-average wages in South Dakota. When deciding if a career is right for you, it is important to know that the time and money you are investing into learning that occupation is going to lead to secure employment.

You can also match your interest results to the current job openings listed in SDWORKS.

Career Pathways

Navigate your education and training plan to employment through a visual roadmap called a Career Pathway.

Job shadows

Explore what a day is like in a career you are interested in by working with a DLR employment specialist to establish a job shadow with a local business. During the job shadow, you can learn more about the business, ask questions and expand your network.

Work Experience

Expand your skills while learning more about an occupation of interest. If enrolled in the Workforce Training program, DLR can develop a paid work experience opportunity for you with a business in the community. A work experience offers a short-term, part-time learning experience to assist you in determining if an occupation is the right fit for you. A work experience provides an opportunity for you to earn a paycheck while learning more about the day-to-day of a job, gaining skills related to the occupation and developing professional networks. Developing a work history and connections related to your field of interest are instrumental as you start the search for your career.

Take the Next Step

A DLR Employment Specialist in a DLR job service office near you can assist in connecting you to employers in your interest area.

Contact Us

South Dakota Department of Labor and Regulation
123 W. Missouri Ave.
Pierre, SD 57501
Phone: 605.773.5017
Fax: 605.773.4211
email