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Conducting a Confidential Job Search

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You know the saying, a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush. Well, when it comes to job hunting, never lose sight of the fact that the job you currently have is worth much more than the one you don’t yet have.


That said, we all need to strategize our career advancement, and conducting a job search sometimes is necessary. However, it is often extremely important that your current employer has no clue about your plans to leave them.


To make sure that your current employer does not find out about your job hunt, here are some tips:


  • Never use your office computer to visit job sites. Employers are on the lookout for such behavior and they might sniff at your activities before you even land an interview. Do all your job hunting in your own time, and on your personal computer or cell phone.
  • Use your personal email address on any resumes, never your company address.
  • Don’t post your resume on job boards. Your company’s HR department will more than likely find your resume as they often do searches to see which employees are looking.
  • Schedule interviews during lunch or after hours and over weekends as much as possible, to avoid taking excessive time off. If you explain to your prospective employers that you don’t like to take time off, they often will be more than happy to schedule interviews to accommodate.
  • Be aware if you are interviewing with a direct competitor, or with a company that is associated with your current employer in any way, and make sure they know you expect confidentiality. Many companies have partner concerns and sister organizations that may not be mentioned on a company’s website. Do thorough homework to ensure that your potential new employer is not in some way connected to your existing employer. Also, if you have a non-compete, be aware of any companies that may trigger that before your interview with them.
  • While interviewing, do not provide the names of your current managers or coworkers to your hiring manager. It’s a small world and you never know who knows whom and may decide to pick up the phone and blow your confidential search.
  • Do not discuss your plans to leave your job with any co-workers or mention your unhappiness on social media.
  • Be open when working with an experienced professional Recruiter. They are aware of confidentiality concerns and will be careful never to expose anyone to their current employer.


Has anyone ever outed you on a job search? How did you handle it?