Job hunting while you are employed can be tricky. You don’t want to burn bridges or be replaced before you have found your dream job. While in general the more people who know you are looking, the easier for people to find you, this is not an option when you need to keep your current employment. Conducting a job search confidentially means choosing the people you tell wisely. Typically you wouldn’t include your co-workers, upper management, or company contacts in this secret. Working with a recruiter will protect your identity until mutual interest with a prospective employer is established. When you do have an interview, let the company know that your job search is confidential.
Do It On Your Own Time & Dime
This is your job search, make sure you do this on your personal time and use your own resources. Make sure that you provide only personal the contact information on your resume or cover letter. For job search correspondence, use a personal email, or set up a new email, and use your own phone and personal computer. This is respectful of the work contract in which you are currently engaged, and will keep you out of any conflicts that could arise if your job search becomes known.
Just as the job searching should be done on your own time, ideally interviews should too. This is not always possible of course, so when you can’t schedule a phone or onsite interview outside of work hours, use your paid time off. Rather than invent any reasons, simply use your personal time. And be careful if you going to work on the same days as your interview that you don’t give yourself away by arriving dressed in a suit and tie that you never wear to work!
Internet Job Hunting
Privacy settings may include your name and contact information for example, and some offer the ability to block specific viewers such as your current company from viewing your resume. While the internet offers vast resources, be careful about what you broadcast on social media from Twitter to LinkedIn, your comments can be widely distributed and very difficult to retract. Review your photos and personal information as employers use social media too!
It is difficult to utilize networks when your job search is confidential, however you can strengthen relationships and communications in general which may open up some doors and offer insight into new opportunities.
Moving On With Grace
Stay invested in your current position and honor the work contract and trust that you have with your current employer while job searching. Until you have accepted an offer in writing, don’t tell anyone about your job search or new job. Once the new position is confirmed, tell your boss first and follow the usual protocols of providing adequate notice (typically at least two weeks). Be graceful in your departure. The relationships you have built here are important, whether for continuing business relations in the same industry, obtaining recommendations in the future, or even future employment down the road with colleagues.