Ethical Job Search – How to Go About It While still Employed

  | 5 min read

Some of us are lucky to get jobs we enjoy doing, bosses who are heaven-sent and colleagues who are like family. Some of us, however, like very few things about their jobs. Some are there just to pay the bills. If your situation is the latter, it is logical to look around for greener pastures in terms of pay and working environment. Seeing that you spend close to 70% of your waking hours at work, you owe it to yourself to be happy with what you do for a living. However, you need to be careful and stealth in your job search for obvious reasons. Your current engagement, no matter how much it bogs you down, pays your bills and sustains your lifestyle. Carefree job search can expose you to the wrath of a scorned employer and you might find yourself in a worse situation- jobless. Also working candidates are more attractive to potential employers since they view them as more relevant and up-to-date with industry practices. This, therefore, calls for ethical ways of conducting your job search.

See some of the logical aspects you should consider when looking for a job while you are still in employment.

It is your little secret

Your job hunting efforts should be known only to you. Keep your colleagues and most importantly, your boss out of your operations. Telling people about your intentions will create tension, even to the well-meaning colleagues. Your boss, on the other hand, will not be as excited as you are that you intend to leave your ‘stressful’ life behind. Most bosses consider it a betrayal of some sorts, and you do not want a bitter supervisor breathing down your neck and monitoring your every move. Worst case scenario is when your boss sniffs your imminent departure and decides to free you of your duties even before your job search effort bear any fruit.

Stealthily update your profile

Your online professional profile is like a second CV to you. Most employers and recruiting companies look at your online profile alongside your resume to make hiring decisions. An active profile shows seriousness, provides a quick summary of your qualifications and skills and provides the kind of information that will make an employer want to take a look at your CV. This also applies to social media. Compromising content and photos can be a complete turn –off to potential employers. Hence clean up your online presence as you look for a new job.

Respect your current employer’s property

Looking for a new job using your employer’s equipment not only leaves trails of your activities for any keen eye to discover, it also shows an utter lack of respect and professionalism. Your current employer was kind enough to offer you the opportunity and is still paying. They deserve respect if for nothing else but that fact. Plan your time well in such a way that you have all you need after working hours to search your job search in peace. Sneaking around might end up in you making avoidable mistakes in your applications.

Keep the appearances

Prospects of getting a new job may excite you and give you an extra skip in your gait. Even so, try as much as possible to keep calm and play it cool. People in the office are likely to pick your excited vibes and suspect you of something sneaky. Worse is when your boss picks the vibes and starts investigating. Be careful about drastically changing your wardrobe and mannerisms. Keep your job search efforts and everything that comes with it on the down low.

Be real with the potential employer

As you agree on interview timelines with potential employers, plan them in such a way that your current work does not suffer. You will seem more professional when you give reasonable timelines and explain honestly why a particular timing will not work for you because you have a meeting with a client. Your interviewer understands that you had a life before they came along and they will see you as extremely professional when you take this in consideration as well. For you, this will help you in case the job search doesn’t turn out as expected. You will go on with your current job without any hitches as you continue searching.

What if you are caught?

When your boss catches you reviewing your CV or scouring through a job site, do not become defensive or lie. Is will only make them more suspicious and they will probably start monitoring all your movements. Just let them politely know that you like to check out what the market has to offer from time to time.

Remain professional all through

Even after signing the offer letter and new contract with a new employer, remain professional as you serve your notice. Respect your previous contract and follow what it has to say about disengagement. Give a complete hand over to help your fellow colleagues transition smoothly. Keep your intentions pure even when you sense hostility from your now former employer. Keep your cool and leave in the most dignified way possible.