When you start to think about whether you should be looking to do something new with your career and changing jobs, one of the first questions you ask yourself is always whether it is the right time. In some cases, the answer is very clear. If you are really dissatisfied with where you are now, and there is no prospect of things improving for you, then it is a very obvious, yes. For most people, though, there are a lot of pros and cons to consider, so it is understandable that they are hesitant. It is fair to say that for many of the candidates we see, ‘is now the time for a new job role?’ is a question they have been over and over in their minds. In fact, some are still mulling it over when we first meet. That’s absolutely fine, and we understand that changing jobs is a big step for a candidate. It’s a change in your life, and naturally, you will be worried about it. That said, there is also a danger of ‘playing safe’ to the detriment of your finances and career prospects.
So how do you know when it is the right time to speak to a recruitment specialist about a career move?
The right time to move
If you are reading this, then clearly, the thought of a move is already pinging on your radar, which is already a pretty good indication you should be considering it further. So why you are thinking about it, and what factors should affect your decision? We can’t possibly cover everything here, so call us, and we will help more, but in the meantime, here are a few things to think about.
Beware of post-covid over caution
Despite all that has happened over the last year, things are nowhere near as unstable as everyone expected. In fact, the number of positions available is remarkably good and actually better than they have been for some time. Businesses seem to be not only opening up but also expanding and investing in growth. While caution after such a troubled year is understandable, it could actually be misplaced.
Have you taken a balanced look?
Pros and cons lists are a good way to decide if it is time to look at your options. Even if one side outweighs the other, you will at least know if there are compelling reasons to consider. Remember to balance them with more than just the number of entries, though. The cons side will certainly contain some big items about stability, but if they also contain entries about how your career is stalled, low income or lack of job satisfaction, for example, you need to give those more weight. On the other hand, if you can’t make a solid case for moving on, then maybe now isn’t the right time.
Have you explored your current options?
It may be that your employer is not even aware of things that are bothering you. Perhaps they don’t realise that you are not really happy in your current role or that you want a pay rise. On the other side of the coin, if you have explored these and the results were unsatisfactory, then you need to have a think about what to do next.
What is it you really want?
Human beings are funny things, and sometimes we don’t actually know what we want until we sit down and think it through. Changing jobs is not like deciding what you want for lunch, it is a big decision, and you really need to be aware of what is motivating you to want a change. A lot of candidates initially think about better pay, but according to research, this is not often the main motivation for a career change. Certainly, a competitive salary is important, but other factors such as job satisfaction, feeling you are valued, workplace culture, flexible working hours and location are often more important. Even small things like the time it takes to commute to work or having a parking space can make a big difference.
Create a work map
If you were thinking about planning a road trip, you would check the route on a map. Do the same with your career. Be realistic about your current skills and experience and plot a way to get to your desired job. What training do you need? Are you ready and skilled up for the next step on the way right now? And so on. If it is all possible where you are, then great. If you can’t reach your destination in your current position, then use the plan to help define what you are looking for in your next role.
The final piece of advice if you are thinking about changing jobs, is to take some advice. Contact us, and we will look at options with you. The worst that will cost you is some time spent with an advisor, and you decide you are okay where you are. On the other hand, you may find that it is the discussion that sends off down the path to an amazing new career. Either way, it’s a win for you.