Job Relocation Best Practices

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12 March 2017

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There may come a time in your career when you realize that relocating can bring better opportunity. However, it can be difficult to get noticed by a hiring manager when you’ve got an out-of-town or an out-of-state resume. In fact, in cases where resume software includes geographic criteria, it can be impossible.

If you’ve been attempting to conduct a long-distance job search with little success, here are some tips to help you jump start your efforts.

Omit Your Address

While it can be a bit misleading to leave your address off of forms, you don’t want to be instantly rejected because of your zip code. Some job seekers use the address of a family member or a friend who lives in the market. Just be upfront with the hiring manager once you have an interview.

Utilize Your Cover Letter

Your cover letter is the ideal place to explain your situation to the hiring manager. Outline the reasons why you are looking to relocate. Perhaps you live in a rural area with little room for growth or the area to which you want to move is known as an industry hub. Or maybe you are relocating to be closer to family. Present your case in a way that shows you are moving to that market no matter what.

Change Your Geographic Region on Your LinkedIn Profile

In order to gain visibility on LinkedIn, consider changing your current location to the postal code of the city to which you intend to relocate. This will make your profile searchable by recruiters in that region.

Keep Your Expectations Realistic

Top-level managers and executives can expect an interested employer to pay for plane tickets for face-to-face interviews, but as an entry-level or mid-level employee, don’t expect the same benefit. There is simply no room in a hiring budget to fly mid-level employees around the country or put them up in five-star hotels. You may have to pay for your own travel expenses for a final round of interviews.

Not all companies pay relocation stipends, either. Again, top-level employees can expect this type of perk, but those in the earlier stages of their careers will be left to pay their own way. Keep your expectations realistic when it comes to a long-distance job search.

Seek Assistance from an Advocate

An effective way to overcome many of the hurdles involved in a long-distance job search is to work with a recruiter. You can spend time with a recruiter, giving you the ability to fully explain your reasons for relocating, and in turn, they will be able to speak directly to the hiring manager, selling you on your attributes rather than your address. They can help you bypass automated resume software and overcome objections that you may not expect.


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