When you have been job hunting for a while, it is easy to become frustrated and consider settling for any role – conveniently forgetting the ‘must-haves’ that were once critical to you. Don’t lose heart and let frustration guide you to a decision you might later regret. Before accepting any new role, I advise my candidates to STOP and consider the following:
Do I have a stable career history?
Before you apply for a new role, ask yourself if the time is truly right to make a move. Impatience can lead you to change jobs too quickly and hiring managers repeatedly tell us that they value a stable work history when considering applicants for a new role. Don’t make the mistake of jumping ship too soon because you are bored or dissatisfied. Take a short break and consider whether you have mastered your current role well enough to confidently take the knowledge you have elsewhere? Chopping and changing roles too often can be detrimental to your career and the way in which prospective employers will view your résumé.
Where will this role take me?
Approximately 70% of the job seekers I meet are looking to leave their current role due to limited career development and progression opportunities. Proceed with caution. A poorly considered move can leave you jumping out of the frying pan and into the fire and you might find yourself in a similar situation in your next role. Throughout the interview process, make sure you ask prospective employers what opportunities there are to expand your skills with their company. It’s also important to consider what achievements you can add to your résumé in three to four years’ time. You want each move to help further your career in both the short and long-term. If the company you are considering regularly promotes from within, there is a good chance that they will encourage and support your career. If the business is rapidly growing, there will most likely be opportunities for you to grow and develop with them. You are also more likely to be involved in project work, streamlining processes and enhancing systems – all great experience for an accounting professional.
Does the role excite me?
Wouldn’t it be great if you woke up each day, genuinely excited about going to work? Before you say yes, ask yourself whether you are more excited about leaving your current role or the new role you are being offered. If you aren’t truly excited about the new opportunity, then I’d think twice before saying yes. Both employees and employers have a responsibility to each other to ensure that the initial excitement felt on accepting a role is nurtured and it will be difficult to do this if there is little excitement to begin with.
Does my prospective new manager inspire me?
You should always meet with the person you will report to during the interview process. My advice is to pay careful attention in this meeting. After your interview, ask yourself whether you will feel enthusiastic and energised working for this person on a daily basis. Did they inspire you? Were you engaged throughout your conversation with them? If the answer is no to either of these questions then tread carefully and ask more questions before accepting the job.
Will I be happy?
Our goal is to match Sydney’s accounting professionals with their dream jobs. We ensure that our job seekers and hiring managers have realistic expectations throughout the recruitment cycle. It is very rare that we have someone start in a role and tell us soon after that they are not happy with the new environment, or that the job is not what they expected. Remember the following:
- Interviews are for your benefit as much as the hiring manager. You should always have an opportunity to ask questions at the end of an interview. It’s important that you use that time to clarify any areas of potential concern so that you leave the meeting feeling comfortable with what the new position entails.
- You will spend more time with your manager during the working week than you will with your family. It’s important that you are compatible and have complimentary work styles.
Have I been with my current employer too long?
Career stability is important but it is possible to stay with a company for too long. Progression, status, organisational knowledge and relationships are obvious benefits of longevity. However, new organisations provide an opportunity to learn a different way of approaching tasks and can open your thinking, preventing you from becoming complacent. If you have not changed roles internally, or it has been a while since you were involved in a new project it might be time to look at what is happening in the market. Too long with one business can leave you labelled as a one-company employee who has been institutionalised.
How far am I willing to travel?
New jobs are exciting but after the initial excitement fades, will you still be happy travelling long distances to get to your job? Distance and accessibility should be seriously considered before deciding whether to apply for a role. Consider your family commitments and whether the prospective employer is accessible via public transport or do they have parking if you chose to drive. What will it cost you in fares, tolls, petrol and time to get to work each day? Are you prepared to move house to be closer to your dream job?
Taking pause for a moment will help you make the right decision and keep your career on track. If you have found your dream job – congratulations and best of luck with your new role. If you are still looking, hang in there. The right job for you is out there. In the meantime, I recommend taking a look at our Job Seeker Toolkit for some tips and ideas or browse our latest job vacancies.