The Christmas break and then the New Year always conjures the idea of finding a new job, be that to have a new challenge, more progression, more enjoyment, or just making that decision you’ve been debating all year long. The start of a long year ahead leads many to start feel as though they could, or should, be achieving more. This is coupled with the additional desire for change that most of us experience in the New Year (be that getting fit, stopping smoking, taking up that hobby you’ve been thinking about all year).
A positive change to our professional lives can bring a boost to other aspects of our lives – and given we spend more time at work than doing anything else, making that decision to make a change can have a huge impact – professionally, physically and emotionally. So is 2019 your year…?
The New Year is always a busy time for us in the recruitment world – given the “fresh start” mentality I mentioned above. There are also other key reasons why the New Year is a good time to start looking for your next role. More people look for jobs in the first 3 months of the year than in any other time of the year – this produces a follow-on effect: more people moving, means there are more opportunities available.
Being prepared for a move (whenever you choose to make it) is a good way to begin. Even if you’re not quite ready to jump in with both feet, preparation is key. The process of putting a CV together, thinking about what you want to achieve helps to crystalise your thinking about whether it’s the right time and will make you a much better interviewee.
Here are a few tips to start your journey in 2019:
(1) Start writing a CV
We can often think that putting together, or updating a CV will be simple, quick and easy. Unless you’ve been consistently updating your CV during your current role, it’s unlikely that it will be a 30-minute exercise.
The process of deciding what to include, how to word it, what to leave out, and how to structure it will take a lot longer than you think. So create a rubric, go through things methodically, and re-draft until you are happy.
Whilst you are writing it, you’ll start to think about what you did and didn’t enjoy, you’ll see what you have achieved and, therefore, it’s a very useful re-cap and debriefing exercise. It will also help you to start thinking about what you will talk about during an interview.
Route1 has already put together a CV writing guide, so I won’t provide another full breakdown here, but here are a few questions to bear in mind when writing it: what were you involved with, what did you do, have you given enough detail, is it relevant, and how does it relate to what I want to do…
(2) Start your research
As you think about what you want from a new role, think also about where and with whom you want to do it. Do you want a large team or a small team? Boutique firm or global giant? Specific client base or real variety? Make sure you research the firms that you are interested in. Do they do what you want, what are the backgrounds of the team, who are they acting for, etc. it’s all good preparation and great knowledge to have.
(3) Write a list
Create a wish list. This may include types of work and types of firm but also include softer elements, such as team dynamics, progression, development, social aspects, diversity, seniority, and questions that you want answering during a process. This should be a list you can then refer to (and add to) as you interview, and you can tick off (or not) as you progress. As you compare these to why you want to move, it will help with you decision making in the interviewing or offer process.
(4) Speak to people in the know
Talking to colleagues, ex-colleagues, and people with deeper market insight (such as a recruiter – you can always talk to Route1!), is always helpful – they can give you opinions, advice, and insights that you won’t get from an employers website. Will you get the progression you want at this firm, will you get the type of work you want, what are the hours/culture/pay like? Also, importantly, will they look at someone like me? At Route1, we’re completely transparent about who is looking to hire – so, if you sign up and want to talk about a role, get in touch. It’s likely that we’ll be able to give you a good insight into the teams, work and culture – and if your experience fits what they usually want.
(5) Sign up to Route1!
Whether you’re a lawyer looking right now, or want to keep an eye on the market for the right role, Route1 is for you. You’re always in control, so your details will never be shared without you making the decision to make the application on the platform. You’ll be able to see who is looking now and be kept up to date when new roles are added. Even better, we’re always here behind the scenes to offer advice, tips or insights when you need them. Whilst we think technology is going to disrupt the traditional recruitment model, we also realise that human, expert insight is a huge added value – so we have combined both! Your data is in your hands, but leave the market insights to us…
Happy New Year! And see you on the Route1 platform!
Route1 Head of Engagement