It’s always a struggle to find a great job that pays well and that you’ll enjoy for years to come. It’s doubly hard to find the perfect job when you’re also trying to hide your search from a current employer.
Many people prefer to apply for work while already in work elsewhere, as at least they don’t have to worry about not having an income, and they have something to fall back on if the job hunt doesn’t work out. But looking for work while in work comes with its own set of problems.
Whatever the reason might be for jumping ship, most job seekers try to keep their job search private from their employers, and break the news to the boss only once the offer is in place. There are good reasons for this – after all, you wouldn’t want to jeopardise your current job by tipping off your manager early, especially if your job hunt turns out to go on for months.
So you’ll want to keep your search for work on the down-low. But how do you go about that? Here are some top tips to keep in mind when planning your escape…don’t worry, your secret’s safe with us.
Leave the search at home
The first and most obvious way to help keep things under wraps is to conduct your job search exclusively outside of work. Even if you check over your shoulder before browsing job sites, remember that many workplaces track internet and email use so it won’t be hard for bosses to find a paper trail. That’s not to mention it’s not terribly ethical to look for work on your employer’s time.
Picking up the phone with recruiters may be difficult if others can overhear your conversation, so be sure only to give out your mobile number (not your work line) and confine chats to break times if you can.
Update your LinkedIn
You might be regarded unfavourably for updating your CV or browsing job boards at work. However for the most part, it should be safe to focus on your LinkedIn profile…even though it covers both of those tasks. This is because networking through LinkedIn is helpful in so many ways even for those who are happy and secure in their jobs.
If you think updating your profile might raise red flags, you can change your settings so as not to broadcast changes to your connections. That way you can get in touch with recruiters without anybody suspecting a thing!
Schedule interviews carefully
So you’ve got the interview…but what happens if it’s scheduled for 2 on a Tuesday afternoon? You’ll either need to duck out of work for a few hours, or else convince the interviewer to see you outside the normal working times.
Trying to book an interview around work is a dilemma as old as time itself, that nobody’s yet managed to solve. A common solution is to claim a doctor’s appointment or family emergency on the day of the interview – or else simply pull a sickie. While we can’t condone lying to your current employer, it’s hard to know what else to do in these circumstances.
However you may be able to set up a quick Skype interview early or late in the day or, with enough advance notice of the interview, you could simply book a day’s holiday off work with no explanation required.
Finally, don’t forget to give a month’s advance notice of your departure, and try to leave on good terms as you may need a good reference, perhaps years down the line.
Searching for work alongside employment is a minefield that most workers find themselves in at one time or another – but once you’ve got the offer, you can look forward to a new and more positive position!