Job searching from work?

Are you guilty of job searching from work? How some employees are being caught out, plus the impact this can have…

It’s long been a problem in offices throughout the UK. Some employees are so keen to get going with their job searches (or so dissatisfied with their current roles!) that they’re hunting from work. This can include everything from searching for job openings to amending CVs, printing related documents, and even making applications.

If you’re doing this, there’s a good chance that you’re breaking your contractual agreement with your employer. Many contracts specifically stipulate how you can spend your working hours, which also includes how you can use office equipment. This is before considering the fact that you’re being paid to work – not to search for work elsewhere!

How some people are being caught job searching from work:

One survey (conducted by Cartridge Save and reported by HR News) has uncovered a unique way that people are being caught out for this practice…

  • 50% of office professionals print their CVs at work;
  • With almost 1/3 (30%) having been warned or even dismissed after their actions were discovered.
  • Conversely, the demeanour has ‘paid off’ for 1/4 of employees, who say their employer actually offered them a pay rise as a result. Still, this is clearly a risky and inadvisable practice.

Even those more innocuous uses of the workplace printer could have disastrous consequences. You could still be breaching your contract if you use the printer for personal use. On this topic, the next most common reasons for using the work printer include:

  • Event tickets (42%).
  • The not so innocuous other interview documents (38%).
  • Personal photos (16%).

For some employees (38%), this is a daily habit that could be contributing to a cost of more than £4,250 a year for medium-sized companies. But back to your job search…

Top tips for conducting your job search when you work full-time:

  1. Remember that your company may also monitor your computer and/or web use. Avoid using the company network (wiFi included!) for personal purposes.
  2. Always use your private contact details on your job applications!
  3. Let your recruitment consultant know your working hours and how and when it’s easiest to reach you.
  4. Return messages early in the day (before work), over lunch, or just after work where possible. Note: we’re open right from 8.30am Monday to Friday to give you the chance to contact your Recruitment Consultant before your 9am start.
  5. Lunchtimes are often your best bet for more detailed activity, including searching for vacancies and longer conversations. Get out of the office and, ideally, find somewhere relaxing to do this.
  6. Visit a print services shop or library to run off copies of your CV and/or interview materials if you don’t have access to a printer at home. Or else, ask a friend to help you out with this.
  7. Avoid sharing any details about your search via social media.
  8. Make sure your recruitment consultant and/or any prospective employers know that your referees should not be contacted until a job offer has been made.

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