Seventy-three percent of workers polled in a Robert Half survey said they would feel comfortable searching for a new job while they're still employed. But that doesn’t mean there is no risk in doing so.
If you're thinking of following suit, you need to tread carefully: You don't want to lose your current job until you've securely landed a new one. If you're feeling like a change is in store for you, the following job search tips can help you find your next gig and leave your current one on a good note.
Check internal openings first
If your dissatisfaction is more about your current position than the work environment, investigate openings in your company before looking elsewhere. When it comes to filling vacancies, many employers prefer internal candidates.
Mind your social media
LinkedIn is one of the first places hiring managers are going to visit, so be ready for them. Make sure your profiles, especially on LinkedIn, are complete and current. Include a professional profile photo and, if relevant, post samples of your work or links to an online portfolio. Make it sparkle and don't be afraid to sell yourself; remember, your profile may be the first impression you make on a hiring manager.
While you're at it, clean up your other social media accounts. Use privacy filters and keep all of your content professional.
Keep your search out of the office
Remain discreet at your current job about your search. Needless to say, if your employer finds out, it could threaten your job security.
On social media, closely monitor your notification settings so you don't inadvertently draw unwanted attention to your job search. Job seekers often rely on LinkedIn because employers access it when looking for talent, but this can backfire if your current manager is one of them. Also refrain from emailing or calling prospective employers from your desk at work. Even if you think your office is private, your online activity may be monitored, and you never know who might walk in and overhear you.
Don't use office equipment to submit resumes, as many devices save files to internal servers that can be monitored. Beyond that, it's simply not ethical to use your current employer's resources and time to job hunt.
Try to schedule job interviews around your working hours. For instance, suggest a breakfast or lunch meeting, or see if the hiring manager is available to meet in the evening. If that's not possible, use a personal day or two for your interviews. Be conscious of your attire. If you show up at your casual office in a business suit, you'll be sure to attract attention.
Explain to prospective employers that your current company doesn't know about your job hunt so the hiring manager doesn't contact your supervisor or coworkers and spill the beans. Also, be careful about listing current coworkers as references — you never know whom they may tell.
Respect your current employer
Don't let your work suffer because the excitement of the hunt has distracted you. Even if you're unhappy with your current job, remember that you're still getting a paycheck, so you need to stay positive and focused on your tasks.
When you do find a new job, you want to leave on good terms, with your manager and coworkers feeling positive about your contributions to the office. You never know when you might run into them again.