Practice a few key ways to keep your job search private to avoid sabotaging your current job.
You may have had it with your current job or boss, but announcing your plans to leave before you have a job offer in hand is tantamount to career suicide. If your future employers ever catch wind of it, burning bridges only shows them a highly unprofessional and volatile attitude. You also never know when you might need a recommendation from your previous job. Even if you aren’t chomping at the bit and do like your present job, opportunities to further your career may arise and demand an outside move to a new employer. Whatever the case, we recommend that you always practice discretion. Don’t shy away from asking prospective employers to do the same as well.
How to Keep the Job Search a Secret
If you’ve been at your entry level job for awhile and have garnered enough skills and proficiencies, it may be in your best interest to search out new grad jobs with bigger and better opportunities for advancement - a job hop. Use the following tips to conduct your search:
1. Ask for Confidentiality - If you’re interviewing and the current company asks if they can contact your old job, tell them that you prefer confidentiality. This is a pretty standard request so that you don’t jeopardize your position at your current place of work and it should be honored.
2. Practice Some Discretional Phrasing – When someone from a prospective company asks you if you’re looking for a job at any point, and you aren’t sure whether or not they may know your employer, you’ll want to give them a ‘soft yes’ in response. You can say, “it’s always good to keep your options open,” without affirming that you are actively looking.
3. Go Through a Recruiting Agency- A recruiter or headhunter will retain confidentiality in their search until they have a pretty good match and an actual interview lined up for you.
In an age where everyone is connected, just remember that it may not be completely possible to avoid your employer being contacted about your job search. Always make sure to have a backup plan in case you do have to move much sooner than you had planned. Remember, you decided to leave your job for a good reason, so don’t let what-ifs stop you from taking the next step in your career. If you need somewhere to start, try searching the early career jobs at FirstJob.com.
Amy Liu is a Digital Marketing Associate at FirstJob and graduated with a B.A. in Psychology from UC Berkeley. In her free time, she loves exploring San Francisco and trying out tasty new restaurants.