Some people say that it’s easier to find your next job when you’re already employed, but searching for new employment whilst you’re working for a different organisation comes with risks.
So, how can you manage your job hunting without jeopardising your current position?
Why start your job hunt whilst already employed?
There are a variety of reasons to adopt this approach. Job applicants who are already working are more desirable to employers than those who aren’t in employment. Managing the process seamlessly also helps guarantee continuity of income for you and prevents gaps appearing on your CV or resume. You can search at leisure, knowing that you’re comfortably employed and secure, rather than feeling compelled to apply for the first thing you see.
To start your job search whilst in employment, employ a healthy dose of common sense. Don’t talk about your plans to find a new job with colleagues. Keep it to yourself. Don’t use your work e-mail or telephone to progress your search, as both can be easily monitored. Use your personal mobile and personal e-mail accounts.
Use your own time and resources
Make sure you aren’t carrying out a job hunt on company time. You can use your lunch hour and any breaks to carry out personal things. Similarly, don’t send out job applications using company stamps and letterheads and don’t print off copies of your CV on the company printers. Do these things outside of work and finance them from your own pocket.
Don’t get caught out
Be careful not to have job-related conversations with recruiters within earshot of others. Schedule any interviews at lunchtime or after work, or book a day off. On days where you’ll be going out for an interview, don’t come in suspiciously dressed in unusually smart clothing. If necessary, change clothes off-site beforehand.
Most prospective employers will understand that you don’t want your boss contacted to give you a reference before you’ve formally accepted a job offer and given in your notice. So make your position clear in the interview. Most recruiters will respect you for it and appreciate that you are keen to do the right thing by your existing employer. It shows a good set of values for you to bring to your next role.
Do you actually need to move?
Searching for a job is a positive action and far better than staying dissatisfied in a new role, but before searching for a new job, check first that you’ve exhausted routes for progression at your current company.
Often a development plan can be progressed with your current manager to get you to the role and position you’d like to be in, so explain your interest and ambitions and see what’s possible before automatically moving on. There will be advantages to this, such as an accrual of benefits, an existing standing within the company and a culture that you already know. If you can’t decide which approach is best, consider speaking to an independent careers consultant to understand what’s best for you.
This guest article was written by Francesca, a UK-based writer with an interest in employment and careers. She writes on behalf of en-spiral.