Do’s and don’ts of job hunting whilst still employed
James, July 26, 2013
Working a job that you are unhappy with can be disheartening. If you are considering a new career whilst already employed, then it’s important to make sure that you don’t jeopardise your current job.
The cardinal rule of job-hunting whilst employed is to be discrete. Your manager is not going to be happy if you are looking to leave, and this could have immediate impacts on your current role. In extreme cases your company could start considering their own options. They may discuss whether your post is necessary. If they decide it isn’t, and you haven’t jumped ship, then you may be facing redundancy. Here are some suggestions to minimise the impact.
1. The rumour mill always runs overtime. A quiet word with a colleague could quickly spread, and once that rumour is out, it’s impossible to quash. Keep your job hunt to yourself.
2. Social media is the way forward when looking for job opportunities, so update your LinkedIn profile, but don’t post your CV online, such as on a professional career website, as it’s more than likely to be noticed. Check your Facebook privacy settings so that your current employer cannot read about your personal life.
3. Don’t change your current attitude to work. If you are intending to move on, it’s more important then ever to perform in your current role. You will need a good reference, and any missed deadlines or lack of usual enthusiasm will soon be noted. Make sure you are still a committed member of your team, and don’t run down your company. Rise above your current situation no matter how much you clash with a certain person or find the work insipid. Prove you are better than the situation.
4. It sounds obvious, but ensure that your references are not taken up before a position has been offered. If you are unsure if the company you are applying to will be discrete, put ‘available on request’ on your CV or application form. Most employers are aware that discretion is important, but even with the best of intentions slip-ups can be made.
5. When attending interviews try to use your holiday, or make appointments out of hours to keep your absence to a minimum. A good tip is to put hours during which you can be reached on your CV, so people know when they can contact you. If you have to attend an interview during working hours, don’t wear your best suit if that isn’t your usual attire.
6. Don’t use work phone numbers or email as points of contact, and avoid using the internet at work as most employers monitor usage.
During your job hunt try to be objective and measure your current role against what opportunities are available. Don’t jump ship for the sake of it. Could you change what you don’t like about your current role? Could working from home be arranged if the commute is too much? Whatever you decide to do, discretion at work is vital. Don’t broadcast your intentions, and do keep producing quality work.