Changing careers can happen when you realize you hate your current company, or when your current company realizes they hate you. Sometimes a career change is forced upon you when you least expect it; one day you're shooting out expense reports and the next you're turning in your company car.
Whether your career change is planned or not, it's important to prepare for change and to know how to conduct a job search. Before going into the main components of being prepared for a career change, the basics need to be addressed first.
First and foremost, find out your eligibility for continuation of health and life insurance benefits, accrued vacation pay, unused sick pay, and other payments people are entitled to when laid off. Keep in mind there may be a lag between when your current health insurance coverage ends and a new policy starts. Also, don't forget to file for unemployment.
Once the insurance is covered, here are other things to keep in mind when your job is unstable. Better to be safe than sorry, and here is how to make sure you aren't the latter:
1. Prepare your resume and cover letter
A resume is the single most important thing you can give your future employers that will help get you an interview. It needs to be updated, professional, and grammatically correct. Cover letters give the employer a little more insight into who you are and what you can offer their company. Countless resources are available online to help create both resume and cover letters. Excellent sources include http://www.howtowritearesume.net/ and http://www.resume-place.com/resources/free-builders/.
2. Compile your references
Make a list of references and letters of recommendations just in case you need them. Asking previous employers or people you work with are good options. This is also a good networking tool.
3. Update your contact information with email and phone
Only use contact information that is completely separate from your companies contact information.
4. Prepare yourself with questions about your old job.
Whether you were laid off or left on your own free will, have answers prepared for interviewers as to why you left your previous place of work. If you got laid off, don't lie.
5. Don't get worried about getting caught
Sites are available online that allow you to apply for jobs anonymously. There are also sites that will protect your identity from employers on the site; therefore, even if your own company is on the sites, you will not get caught for putting your name out in the job search world.
6. Clean out your computer
Clean out all personal documents, and take home all of your personal belongings. Try to leave on the best terms possible. You never know who will be able to give you the reference you need to get that next job.
Find out more at http://www.modernworkforce.com