Relocating for a job or career change? Consider these essential tips first

Monday, February 26, 2024

If you want a fresh career start or a change of scenery — or just want to venture to a new city to explore your employment options — it’s wise to have a plan in place regarding a job move. 

Career experts weighed in on how to put a plan in place so that you can implement your agenda successfully and land a dream job in a new city.

Here are tips to consider.

Begin with personal and professional networks

When you're looking to relocate, consider tapping into your social and professional circles to gain leads and learn key information.

"The first step in preparing for a move is tapping into existing connections," said Erin Lau, director of service operations with Insperity, an HR firm, in New York.

If you feel comfortable going public with your plans, you might "announce the move on social media and LinkedIn so that friends and colleagues can share the news with their own networks," she suggested.

This tactic may pique the interest of someone who can help, she said.

"It’s impossible to know if a former co-worker has also moved or if a family member’s employer has offices in a new city and could offer a referral, which remains one of the best ways to attract an employer’s interest," she said.

Conduct research on your target markets

If your networking efforts don’t generate any viable leads, research the job markets that interest you, said Lau, so that you can identify potential employers.

"And begin networking via LinkedIn as soon as possible to make the job hunt easier," Lau said. 

During your interviews, be sure to tell prospective companies you will relocate if offered a role.

"Set up informational interviews with professionals in the same industry to make connections and meet friends," she said.

Better yet, schedule virtual interviews with employers in the new city before the move to expedite the hiring process after moving, she said.

Also, when scoping out new locations for work, it's wise to look up open positions online, said Lau — and ideally, send out a few applications to gauge the competitiveness of the job market. 

"Even if these exploratory applications do not lead to interviews, seek an understanding of what employers are looking for in a new city by learning about the backgrounds of current employees and job requirements," Lau explained.

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