Years ago, I read an article that advised the reader to begin the search for their next job as soon as they began a new job. That advice seemed a bit extreme but I understood the concept enough at the time to know what the writer meant. It meant something very simple yet poignant; be prepared.
In this challenging job market, keeping your job search active provides you with several important things, and two specifically stand out:
It requires you to keep your resume updated. It’s stressful enough to look for work, and have to update an extremely outdated resume. You’re more likely to forget things that you’ve done or projects you’ve worked on. You definitely don’t want to leave those off of a resume. Adding new items to your resume frequently while you’re employed will make it easier in the long run. Additionally, some companies require you to regularly submit your resume for an annual talent review, and you’ll want to be prepared because often the deadline to submit your resume will be sooner than you think.
It keeps you in practice to be interviewed. Those who haven’t interviewed in awhile may not feel as prepared as those who have been actively interviewing. Regularly interviewing insures that you’ll feel poised, calm, and that you’ll have a better idea of the questions to expect and what answers you’ll give. The more interviews you have, the better prepared and less nervous you’ll feel.
Unless you absolutely love your job and feel like it’s the one you’ll stay at for a long time, it won’t hurt to begin your job search now. Equip yourself with the tools to sail through your next job search like a pro. It’ll be painless.