How to Look for a Job When Currently Employed

As a general rule of thumb, it is easier to find a new role when currently employed, and actively working candidates are typically able to negotiate higher salaries than those that are unemployed.

Hence, if you’re currently employed, thinking whether or not it is okay to look for a new job, this guide’s for you! ISC’s team of executive recruiters have put together a few tips and tricks that can help you land your dream job. So let’s get started!

Explore Options in Your Company

Obviously this doesn’t apply for job-seeking employees who are dissatisfied with their company’s policies, culture, work environment, or practices. However, if the reason for your dissatisfaction in your current role has more to do with the work itself, or perhaps even your direct manager, as opposed to the company as a whole, it’s always smart to look within your current organization first, before looking elsewhere.

You can maintain your seniority, and build upon your history within the company rather than having to start fresh. Set up google alerts for job openings, peruse company bullet boards, and put out feelers. Respectfully ask HR what the protocol is for exploring roles beyond your current position, and ask what the best way would be to be considered for different opportunities.

When doing so, be sure to be crystal clear on the WHY you are looking for a change. Are you dissatisfied in your current position because of the hours, or do you feel bored? Be transparent while being careful not to say anything disparaging about your current manager, for obvious reasons.

Become a Boomerang

If you’ve left your previous company on good terms, it’s a great idea to get in touch with former coworkers and bosses to find out about new jobs. The good thing about this practice is that less on-boarding time will be required if you secure a position in a field or firm that you’ve worked in before.

In today’s unprecedented need to hire for critical fill roles, assuming that you left on good terms, companies are always eager to re-visit former employees. We have recently seen companies agree to provide seniority from their initial start date. The sky appears to be the limit in terms of what you can negotiate these days, again assuming that you are a top tier candidate with a solid track record of success.

Stay Discreet

The primary mantra for job seekers that are currently employed should be not to needlessly burn any bridges. Think of the future, and always play the long-game when it comes to your career. There is a right way and a wrong way to conduct a job search, and not giving your current job 100% of your attention during work hours is a recipe for disaster.

Strive for excellence, and it will always pay off. You don’t need to quit to find a new role, but you absolutely need to keep your head in the game as long as you are receiving a paycheck from your current company. Most companies are cognizant of the challenges of interviewing when currently employed and offer flexibility when scheduling interviews, including during lunch and after hours.


What’s more, when a manager hears that an employee is planning to leave, he will start looking for your replacement, and you want your eventual departure to be on your terms, not your boss’s.

Find Your Dream Job with ISC

Best case scenario when currently employed and wanting to make a change, is to partner with an experienced Executive Recruiter, ideally one that has a strong track record of success. It’s extremely beneficial to have a recruiter working towards gaining you confidential interviews for other roles, while you are focusing on your current job.

The vast majority of top performing candidates that are in Director level and higher roles typically prefer to have a recruiter approach companies that are of interest on their behalf, while maintaining high levels of confidentiality, as opposed to risking approaching companies directly.

For job seekers that want to put out feelers for their next role, consider checking out International Search Consultants list of Hot Jobs for potential matches.

You can also send in your resume to "> to have your CV added to our confidential database. Rest assured that we never share details about individual candidates without going over a specific job in-depth, ensuring that not only does the candidate meet & exceed all the mandatory qualifications that the hiring company is looking for, but also that the role is truly a good match for the candidate, in terms of career path, company culture, and compensation.

Ann Zaslow-Rethaber is President of International Search Consultants, a leader in executive search since 1999. Our team of 15 experienced recruiters can provide top talent for a variety of roles within SalesFinance, and HR .

Jennifer Crook is an executive recruiter with International Search Consultants. Jennifer can be reached via direct dial at 800-319-9670 or email at