Career Management

Looking for a new job when you are already employed can be tricky. It can be incredibly time consuming and when you’re working full time you may feel like this is time that you just don’t have.

It’s also important that  you keep your job search below the radar, as you don’t want to jeopardise your current position by giving your boss reason to suspect that you are considering jumping ship.

There are ways to get around these obstacles however and in the same way there are things that you should avoid doing. Here are a few do’s and don’ts that you should follow when searching for a job when you already have one.

1) DO update your LinkedIn profile.

Don’t be afraid of updating your LinkedIn profile in case your boss notices. LinkedIn is not solely good for finding a new job, as creating and maintaining your professional network can be beneficial for business in a number of ways. If you are worried, however, you can change your settings so that changes made to your profile are not broadscasted to your network. Keeping your profile complete and up to date will optimise your chance of being approached by a recruiter about suitable roles, so it’s worth doing well.

2) DON’T talk to colleagues about your job hunt.

You may have struck up a good friendship with your colleagues and feel like you trust them to keep your intentions quiet, but you never know who they might tell and you don’t want the news to spread around the whole office! You may also find that colleagues won’t involve you as much in upcoming projects, etc. at work once they know that you plan to change job.

3) DO schedule interviews during non-work hours.

If possible, try to organise your job interviews outside of working hours. This way it won’t disrupt your current job and you won’t have to come up with a feasible excuse to duck out of work for a couple of hours. Hopefully if you explain to your prospective employer that you would like to keep your job hunt a secret they will understand and be able to accommodate to your needs. If you are unable to fit an interview in before or after work, you may want to consider using a day’s holiday, as you will lose any leftover days once your leave the job anyway.

4) DON’T dress differently to normal.

If you normally dress pretty casually for work, it’s probably going to look a little bit strange if one day you rock up in a suit and tie. If you have an interview before or after work, make sure you have a change of clothes with you so that you do not raise suspicions.

5) DO network.

Referrals are highly valued when hiring and therefore creating and maintaining a network of industry contacts can come in very helpful when you are seeking a new role. Reconnect with old contacts and let them know that you are looking for a new role, as they may be able to help you out. Another option is to attend events that are relevant to your area to work and meet new people within the industry.

6) DON’T search when you are at work.

If you start searching for a new job while you are at work, you’re just asking to get caught! A lot of companies monitor their employees internet use, emails and phone calls, so make sure that you use your own personal phone for calls related to your job hunt. It’s also not very ethical to apply for jobs within working hours, as your employer is paying you to do a job within this time, so stick to your free time.

7) DON’T post your resume on a job board.

It’s possible that someone from your organisation will see your resume on one of these job board and will then know that you are looking. If you would like to keep your job hunt quiet, by all means apply for roles found on job boards, however avoid setting up a job seekers profile.

8) DON’T mention your job search on social media.

Social media can be a great place to learn about vacancies and to expand your network, but try not to reveal that you are looking for a new job on any of your social media accounts as it could easily fall upon the wrong set of eyes. The same goes for having a rant about work in a moment of frustration!

9) DO give appropriate notice in writing.

Once you have found a new role, make sure that you give the necessary notice that is stated in your contract. Let your boss know that you will do your best to make your departure go as smoothly as possible and help to train your replacement.

10) DO leave in a professional manner.

Even if you’ve not had a particularly good time in a company and are glad to see the back of it, you should do your best to handle your departure with professionalism and dignity, as you never know when you may want to call on them for a reference or business proposition in future, so you don’t want to burn any bridges by leaving on a negative note.

[Image Credit: Shutterstock

About Sophie Deering

You can follow Sophie at @SophieDeering.

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