Looking for a job when you’re happily employed might seem counterintuitive, but it has some advantages: You’re not desperate to take a job and can take the time to find something that’s a really good fit. You may also find that you’re content to stay where you are — for now.
The business world is incredibly fluid, and the days of 20-plus years at one company and a gold-watch retirement ceremony are long gone, says career and entrepreneur coach Karen Watts. “Companies are bought, sold and change without warning, so even if you like your job, it could dissolve around you,” she says. A change in personnel, policy or your own circumstances may require you to move up, move on or move away, she says.
Here’s how to be a strong passive job seeker.
Maintain Your Professional Network
People tend to ramp up networking before or during a job search, but it’s important to network throughout your career no matter what your job status. Connecting with people, learning about opportunities and sharing ideas can be a career-booster without being a career-changer. But if you’re interested in looking for a job when you have a job, it’s a must.
Reconnect with and nurture your professional network, Watts says. “You don’t even have to start telling people you might want a new job right away. Simply make sure your connections are familiar with your work and start to have you as their top-of-mind example when speaking about your industry.” Attend industry events and get to know new people, and talk about your accomplishments and ideas.
Keep Your Skills Sharp
If you’ve been comfortable at your current job for some time, you may feel a little disconnected from where your industry is going. Your organization’s perspective and approach to business may not necessarily give you a clear picture of where the market is going, so it’s important to get a clear view of trends and developments in your field, Watts says.
Read about the companies you might be interested in working for, Watts says, and research salary ranges and technology for the roles you’re interested in. “If you’ve been in the same job for a while, it’s possible that you’ve missed important industry changes while doing things the company way,” she says. Follow big names in social media and read more industry publications.
It’s always a good idea to have an updated resume and online profile, Watts says, and a quick meeting with a job coach or trusted mentor outside the organization can help give you some ideas about your options or next steps if you want to pursue a change. Develop a plan and timetable for how you want to share information with your boss if the time comes.
On Louisiana Job Connection, it’s possible to make your online profile public or private and to display how serious you are about finding a new job. A range of options can indicate to recruiters that you’re happy in your position but are open to new opportunities, indicating that they need to bring their A-game to lure you away. Having an up-to-date profile and resume can help generate the most accurate matches, even if your profile is private.
Louisiana Job Connection is a full-service employment hub. Complete your profile today and let Louisiana Job Connection match you with a job that’s tailored for your skills and experience.