The general rule of thumb about job-hunting while you’re at work? Don’t! Or if you do, be extremely discrete. Your future career may depend upon how you exit your current organization. Ask yourself, “If there’s a higher level job opening in the future, would they ask me back?”
A recent Accountemps survey found that about 3 in 10 workers would search online or take a call from a recruiter while at work. The younger worker is more likely than an older worker to respond and those with families are least likely. BUT, over 60% of all visits to job sites come during standard working hours of 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. What does that tell you?
If you get a call from a recruiter, the general rule is to take the call and refer them to your home phone at a time certain. Don’t spend more than a few minutes with them, but make sure you indicate your interest to learn more. Don’t send out an email message from your company computer. Never use your work e-mail account or cell phone to conduct job searches. Your employer might view your job search efforts using company property as a betrayal of trust on your part.
Don’t ever print out a resume using an office printer. Don’t post a resume on a jobs site used by your company. Don’t modify your LinkedIn or Facebook page site to look like a “job wanted” poster. It’s OK to conduct a few breakfast and lunch meetings with potential employers. If your boss or co-worker asks you if you’re looking for another job, you can honestly say, ‘I’ve gotten a few phone calls from time to time for a higher position or more money, but I’ve not taken any action as I prefer to stay here”. Make sure it’s true, however.
If you can, talk with your manager. Companies prefer to hire from within, as they know you and what you can do. If you can handle more responsibilities, make it known. You never know what’s possible unless you ask. If you can’t ask these questions because of fear or reprisals, you’re probably in the wrong organization in the first place.
Summary thoughts to keep in mind:
- Play it safe when going online. Always use your own computer, but not at the office.
- Ask recruiters and potential employers to keep everything confidential.
- Control who you confide in or ask for help. Office mates can be the least confidential.
- Have a planned response if asked if you’re looking for another job. You don’t want to be like a deer in the headlights.
Take action: Prepare for the surge of jobs in the Fall season. Contact Bill Kaufmann to be your personal coach. Send comments, questions or your resume for a review to: firstname.lastname@example.org