The thought of leaving a current position and looking for a new job may seem scary. However, our experts say that there are often signs that employees should be on the lookout for that indicate a job search should commence sooner than later.
1. Restructuring or Major Layoffs Are Happening
According to Haley Cousins, recruiter at sales and marketing recruitment firm Naviga Business Services, one of the strongest indicators that an employee should start looking for a new job is when any major restructuring or layoffs are happening at the company. "In case of situations like these, it's always a good idea to keep your resume up to date along with your LinkedIn profile," Cousins advises.
2. Work Is No Longer Challenging
"If you no longer feel challenged at work, this may be an indication that your career has stalled," says Lynda Zugec, managing director at Canada-based talent management firm The Workforce Consultants. "If your daily work routine lacks mental stimulation and you already know the answers and can usually anticipate the questions, it may be time to move on." Zugec says that this move does not have to be away from the company, instead Zugec advises employees look for opportunities within their current organization as well as outside of it. "Look to see what opportunities are open and ask around. You can take on additional projects, ask your boss for different responsibilities, undergo training courses, or determine the possibility of lateral moves" Zugec says.
3. Key People Are Leaving
Dave Sanford, EVP of Northeast recruitment firm WinterWyman, notes that while turnover is inevitable in any organization, if many of the best people are moving on to do other things, this is a bad sign and could signal the company isn't as healthy or strong as it once was or needs to be. "For your own job security, you may want to follow the lead and start looking for a new position," Sanford warns.
4. Whatever Your Company Makes Isn't Keeping Up
"If your product is dated or becoming obsolete, or if your competition is a better provider of the service you are offering, this is a strong indicator that things are not going in the right direction and it may be time to explore other professional options," Sanford cautions.
5. Communication from the Top Down Has Slowed to a Trickle
According to Sanford, when times are challenging most companies tend to under-communicate. "They aren't necessarily skilled in the art of delivering difficult messages, and rather than share bad news in the best way they can, they don't say anything. If you've noticed an obvious slowdown in communication from the top, it could signal that it's time for you to investigate other opportunities," Sanford explains.
6. Going to Work Is a Chore
Katie Donovan, salary negotiation expert and CEO of Equal Pay Negotiations LLC, says that dreading the workday is the most important sign that it is time to look for a new job. "Do you look forward to going to work? If you answer no and it's been no for a while, then start the search even if you are paralyzed by the fear of leaving." Donovan advises candidates to remember that while looking for a new job may bring fears of the unknown, looking for a job while currently employed gives job seekers the flexibility to find the position that is the right fit. Our experts agree that the age-old saying is true: it is easier to find a job when currently employed, and recommend starting a job search while it is still a choice versus a necessity.