A variety of factors can contribute to job dissatisfaction, perhaps your current role no longer fulfills you, you may feel underappreciated, or you may feel that you've gone as far as you can go within your current organisation. Whatever the reason – if you have been considering looking elsewhere for new opportunities, it's definitely time you addressed the driving factors behind this. Is it just an impulse? Or is it a huge red flag that you're not happy? Change isn't always easy, so it's understandable if you have been postponing this. Even if you're uncertain, the best thing to do is to see what else is out there. Start looking for other opportunities, even if you're not sure if you want another job, this could help you begin to grasp what you really want. On the other hand, you may be ready to jump with both feet into a new opportunity. Following the steps below is a great way to kickstart the process
Take some time to yourself
Navigating a career move can often feel like a full-time job itself. It's best to designate some available time to go over your options and think about what you want and how you can make sure that the next step you take, is one in the right direction. What is it about your current job that doesn't make you happy? How can you change this? Maybe you can talk over any issues with your line manager and come to a solution that will give you greater career satisfaction. If this isn't an option, get clarity on what your goals are and what you need in order to progress to where you want to be. Do some in-depth research and speak to other professionals in your industry. Set aside a small amount of time each day to take action towards moving jobs, whether it's sending an email, making new and relevant connections on LinkedIn or scheduling a phone call with a useful contact.
Plan of action
Once you have evaluated what it is that you want and, just as importantly, what you don't want, set a realistic strategy to get to your desired destination. Break the process down into achievable steps so that you can effectively focus your energy and work realistically towards your overall goal. Use this method to also make sure you set yourself deadlines and make the changes you have committed to achieving, on time. Think about what you have, in terms of your experience, skills, and qualifications. Then consider what you need - whether it's new connections, a better online profile, market intel or a new niche skill, and formulate your plan of action. In other words, how are you going to move forward and obtain these things?
Update your CV
The last time you updated your CV was likely when you last applied for a job, you probably need to spend some time refreshing your listed skills and experience. We recommend that you reassess your CV as a whole rather than just adding in your most recent position and its responsibilities, this helps you tailor your experience to the new role you are applying for. Think about what your key strengths are, what talents and qualities do you have that are most important for you to progress in your chosen career? Align your skills to the requirements of the job you are looking for and consider your past experiences to evaluate if these roles are truly suitable for you. How well does your CV address the opportunities that you want to pursue? Be certain that your most relevant achievements are highlighted and not lost within lengthy, unrelated, bullet-point lists of everything you've ever done. Tailor your CV based on the job specification and the type of company (and company culture) you want. Also, remember to always support your claims with tangible evidence of the results you have produced in the past, it’s great if you can provide relevant stats on what you have achieved. See our advice on perfecting your CV for a more detailed walk-through of the process.
Update your LinkedIn Profile
Ensure that your LinkedIn profile is publicly visible, and your settings are adjusted to show that you are open to new opportunities so that recruiters and individuals posting jobs know that they can approach you. Update your details and make sure you're getting the most out of the platform:
- Upload a profile picture that is recent, professional and friendly
- Use a cover photo that is representative of you and your career
- Include an engaging introductory headline for your personal summary that makes you stand out
- Consider also getting some recommendations from previous employers and colleagues
Doing all of these things not only increases the chances of someone reaching out to you, they significantly increase your chances of getting a response when you want to make your own useful connections. When connecting with other professionals via LinkedIn, send a personal note along with your invitation outlining why you want to be in touch with them.
Harness your connections
Utilise your current relationships but also connect with new people in relevant fields, who are happy to offer you advice and insight. Maybe someone you know isn't able to help you directly, but they could know someone who can. Here, it's important that you don't focus on quantity over quality; getting to know someone and what they do over a coffee or speaking to a recruiter in your market, is much more valuable than collecting multiple business cards at networking events. Do your research, consider what kinds of organisations you would want to work for, who is already working there? Then, know what you want to find out before organising a meeting.
Speak to a market expert
Speak to a recruiter who specialises in your industry to get a clear understanding of the recruitment trends taking place in your field. By having a grasp of what skills and experience organisations are most focused on hiring for, you will be able to ensure that you are a desirable candidate for employers. Recruiters are well versed in dealing with each stage of the hiring process, so the knowledge they can offer is invaluable when taking the leap towards a new role. Your chosen recruiter will be able to give you CV advice, interview preparation and will have a relationship with the hiring managers at a company you're interested in working for - giving you invaluable insider knowledge.
When it’s time for a change of jobs, the path ahead might feel daunting. Armed with this advice, you should hopefully feel optimistic and ready to tackle the task at hand. You may find the career support that is generally available through online research is sometimes quite generic and often leaves something to be desired. Our consultants are experts in their specialist industries and can provide you with personal guidance and more detailed advice as you manoeuvre through each step of the job application process.