Home · Money & Career

Tanisha's Tips: Keep Your Job Search Discreet

Are you searching for your next job? Here are a few tips to help you along the way.
On the hunt for a new position? Tanisha A. Sykes, Senior Editor of Personal Finance & Careers, gives you the scoop on keeping your job search private:
You’ve heard the old adage that looking for a new job is a job. While that may be true, particularly during these times, it’s especially important to keep your current position while searching for the next one. Finding a better job while staying afloat financially means conducting your search with discretion. Here are some pointers to consider:
Use Common Sense. Do not use your work phone, computer, printer or any other work-related equipment or time at the office to conduct your search. Conduct your search at home, only provide recruiters with your cell phone number and go to interviews before or after work. If that’s not possible, do it during your lunch or take a personal or sick day. Be strategic, not frazzled, about your search. And remember, using the office equipment to search for another job is grounds for termination.
Keep Quiet. Discretion is 9/10 of the job search. Okay, I just made that up, but the point is that everyone does not need to know that you are looking for a job. As you network, let people know that you are happy in your current position, but always open to new opportunities. Don’t ever run around the office saying: “I need me a new job,” “I hate this job,” or “I can’t wait to get out of here.” It’s tacky and unprofessional and the negative energy will surely hinder your search.
Cloak Your Online Search. Find out which Internet career services your current employer’s HR department uses. Ask colleagues or look for job postings from your company online. The last thing you want to do is to send your resume to your boss.
Select References Carefully. Unless you absolutely trust this person and they can vouch for your professional aptitude, do not use your girlfriend at work as a reference. Why? Because it can easily slip that they gave you a glowing reference, spreading your business unintentionally.
Be Honest. Stress to hiring managers that your job search is confidential. If the offer is imminent, request a written job offer before allowing them to contact your current employer. Being discreet about your search could be the difference between getting a job and being out of one. Good luck!