By Jason Bramwell
According to a recent survey from Accountemps, a specialized staffing firm for temporary accounting, finance, and bookkeeping professionals, nearly three-quarters (73 percent) of workers polled indicated they would have no problem looking for new employment before leaving their current firm.
Of the 427 employees surveyed who work in an office environment, 46 percent said they would be "very comfortable" looking for a new job while employed, followed by 27 percent who would be "somewhat comfortable." Fifteen percent reported they would be "somewhat uncomfortable," and 11 percent said they would be "very uncomfortable."
Some employees may go as far as searching for a new gig while at the office. Almost half (48 percent) of survey respondents between the ages of eighteen and thirty-four said they would be likely to conduct job-search activities at work. This compares to 26 percent of professionals between the ages of thirty-five and forty-four, and 21 percent between the ages of forty-five and fifty-four who expressed a similar willingness.
"The grass is not always greener on the other side, so professionals should first consider how they might improve their current situation before looking for a new job," Accountemps Chairman Max Messmer, who also authored Human Resources Kit for Dummies, 3rd Edition, said in a written statement. "When it is time to move on, conducting the job hunt using company resources is not only unethical, it places the employee at a high risk of being caught in the act."
Six Tips on Conducting a Job Search While Employed
Accountemps offers the following six tips to help professionals search for a new job while still employed.
1. Look at internal openings first. If you have outgrown your current role but are happy with your work environment, see if there are relevant openings within your company before looking elsewhere. When it comes to filling vacancies, many employees prefer internal candidates.
2. Keep it to yourself. If you want to keep your job search a secret, do not mention it to anyone at work. Even the most trustworthy coworker could inadvertently spill the beans. It is best to stay mum until you announce your resignation.
3. Play it safe when going online. Be careful when visiting job boards or using social media to conduct your search. A single status update could be enough to alert your employer. You can further minimize the risk of being caught by ensuring your privacy settings are tight and using services that mask your identity when posting your resume online.
4. Be up front with potential employers. Most hiring managers understand that you will need to make arrangements to communicate or meet outside of office hours. Schedule interviews before or after work or during your lunch break.
5. Focus on the details. If you work in a casual environment where jeans and sneakers are the norm, showing up in a suit following a job interview could reveal your intentions. Bring a change of clothes so nothing seems amiss.
Stealthy Job Hunting: Share Your Experiences
What are your on-the-job interview experiences? Have you ever gotten caught sneaking out for a long lunch? Have you had to make excuses for wearing a suit to work in a casual environment? Has the boss ever intercepted a call from a headhunter? Please share your experiences and read what your colleagues have to say.
6. Partner with a recruiter. A professional recruitment agency is often your best bet when it comes to conducting a discreet job search. A recruiter can confidentially distribute your resume and identify relevant employment opportunities on your behalf.