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A new career path
Where to start
It’s 2019…… A New Year usually starts with a list of things you want to achieve in the year, usually New Year’s resolutions. High on many people's lists along with no chocolate, reduced alcohol, a positive mental attitude and a new gym membership is often to get out there and find a new job!
However, before you do anything, stop and ask yourself these questions;
Why do I want a new job?
What do I want from my next job?
What do I actually want to do?
This may sound obvious, but before you start, make sure you are clear about the reasons for getting a new job. Remember moving for the sake of it might not make you any happier – it is important to get the right job. Not every job is the right job!
Why do I want a new job?
This normally falls into a few categories
- Escaping your current boss
- Work Life Balance
- A feeling that you need a new challenge
If you have fundamentally been happy in your work, but you are going to look for one of the last four reasons listed, it is worth talking to your boss before you start your search.
You don’t need to tell them you are looking to leave if they can't change things, but it is quite normal for organisations to try and accommodate the needs of a good employer, so it is better to have this conversation before starting your search. Otherwise you may well find you are offered these things when you resign anyway which if you decide to stay will have meant you have wasted a lot of time and effort and also caused a little irritation to the company you were going to join!
What do I want from my next job?
Make sure you know your worth. There are hundreds of salary surveys out there so get a feel yourself, but also speak to a few recruitment consultants. They should have insight to what the market is doing and which are the 'hot' skills in demand. Over the past few years for instance, we have seen above average rises in salaries for Tax Professionals, Payroll Professionals and Newly Qualified Professionals from Accountancy Practices among others, because there have been skills shortages in these areas.
Industry & sector
You’ll want to ensure you know what you really want from your next role. For instance, you may be interested in working within a certain industry or sector. You may have more interest in a big company than a small one or you may know exactly what businesses you want to target. Having a clear understanding of what types of companies you want to work for will make your search less confusing.
Duties and Responsibilities
It may be that you have been bored in your current role because you want to expand on your duties and responsibilities. You may want to gain managerial experience, be able to be more strategic. Whatever it is, work out exactly what you want before looking.
Work Life Balance
A more common reason than 20 years ago... The world of work has changed and you may be someone that wants to take advantage of this. Just be clear on what Work-Life Balance means to you, as it means very different things to different people and companies and also make sure you weigh up the duties against the work life balance. There have been lots of people move to try and reduce their stress but then end up bored.
Before Starting the Search:
You should be updating your CV whenever you change roles, take on new responsibilities etc. Make sure you are including dates and to make it easier for the employer to understand your previous experience. Keep your job titles to commonly heard of positions.
It’s important to keep a record of completed projects and achievements as these are big talking points. When applying for specific roles, research the company and tailor your CV around their job description using keywords. Read Chris Goulding’s blog to see more detailed CV tips.
Tidy up your social media
Before you start sending your CV out to clients, make sure that you have checked your Social Media settings and also your past posts. It is normal for prospective employers to look you up online before meeting you and you don’t want anything on there that does not portray you as you wish to be seen. Live by a simple rule.... If you don’t want your Mum to see it, don’t post it!!!
- LinkedIn – clients will look at this and make judgements. A poor profile is likely to stop you getting an interview, so make sure it is a good profile or none at all. Keep your career experience and accomplishments up to date and ensure it reflects your CV.
- Facebook – employers do look through your profile when you apply for jobs, so make sure your settings are appropriate. You don’t need them to see everything you do outside of work!
- Twitter – make sure that old tweets are not controversial. We have all read stories about people's tweets from years and years ago which have come back to haunt them.
Once things are on the net, it’s publicly accessible and not as easy to hide as you may think!
Routes to Market:
Many organisations will advertise directly, so keep an eye out on the job boards.
You can now change your settings to show 'open to opportunities'. This makes it easier for recruiters to find you directly. Also utilise LinkedIn to speak to ex-colleagues, they may be able to tell you about roles that are coming up.
You could add your CV to one of the many CV boards that are out there. These allow you to give rough outlines of what you are looking for and they allow recruiters to find you. However, try and pick the boards that are most relevant to the area that you work in.
Make use of your network
It’s a fact that referrals are more likely to be hired due to trust of word of mouth. If someone else is talking positively about you, it attracts attention. Make use of the people you know and get yourself to networking events.
Ultimately we wouldn’t still be here unless the majority of positions were filled through us. Work out which agencies you feel have a strong reputation in the market and give them a call. We recommend keeping your initial search to 3-4 agencies as otherwise you may feel you lose control of your search. A good recruiter will give honest advice on your CV, financial worth, ways of reaching your career goals and the market as it currently stands.
Once you have done all the above, the dreaded interviews should start to flow!
Interviews have changed over the last few years, but the fact remains that first impressions count. Make sure you have planned your journey, researched the business and the person that will be meeting you. Our Interview Blogs from Philip Macdonald can help, you can find the first in the series here
Please contact Chris Goulding at Wade Macdonald for an informal conversation if you are considering a New Year move and he will pass you in the right direction.