Landing a job is the first official step in launching a potentially rewarding career. Where you go from the moment you sign the employment contract largely depends on the merits of your performance. Eventually the time will come when you think your present job has run its course and you begin looking for other opportunities. But you may not have to look very far because you can apply for a job within your company.
Human resources is always searching for the best people in the industry. But talent does not only exist outside the four walls of the office. In fact, many companies prefer to source talent internally because:
- Time and resources have been invested.
- It is good for morale.
- Current personnel already know the company culture.
- The cost of investment is much less than hiring external talent.
- The transition period is easier.
Here are 7 valuable tips you should consider when applying for a job within your company:
1. Research Available Job Openings
Many companies post their job openings on their website. As a current employee, you have two other avenues to job openings:
- Email: You can ask the HR department to include you in its e-mail list for job updates. Or if the feature is available, subscribe through the company website.
- Bulletin board postings: These are frequently posted in strategic locations within the office. This is a clear advantage you have over external talent.
- Referrals: If you have been networking since day 1 in your job, you should have established contacts in other departments who can give you inside information on job openings.
Keep in mind that there are skills, positions, or designations that HR may not publish online due to the sensitivity of the job itself.
2. Meet With Your Company’s HR Officer
A key advantage you have over external talent is that you have immediate access to people in HR.
Take some time to meet with your company’s HR officer or representative. Inform the HR officer that you are interested in the job and would like to know more about it. He can give you insights on what the job entails and the requirements. It is an effective way to assess whether you have the necessary qualifications.
3. Inform Your Immediate Supervisor
Once you have decided to apply for the job within your company, it is a good idea to inform your immediate supervisor. In most companies, this is standard protocol. But more than that, it is a sign of respect and a great way to extend due consideration. When you leave, the department will have to find a replacement. There could also be tasks that need to be completed or turned over to the new employee.
Tell your supervisor or manager why you want to apply for another job within the company. Even if relations are not ideal, always remain professional when discussing the matter with your supervisor.
4. Tailor Your Application to the Job Requirements
Submitting your application for a job within your company is no different from when you submitted your application for the first time as an external talent. The number one rule in preparing your application is to customize it according to the job requirement itself.
Find out everything you can about the job, including:
- required hard skills
- preferred soft skills
- current developments
- standards, benchmarks, and other guidelines.
Use the information to craft your resume by searching for the right keywords for the job and creating an effective narrative.
5. Introduce Yourself to the Hiring Manager
After you’ve e-mailed your application, take the time to visit the hiring manager and submit the hard copy. Advise the hiring manager that you already e-mailed your application. Use the opportunity to introduce yourself and convey your sincere interest in applying for the position. Meeting with the hiring manager is an effective way to put a face to the resume without the need for a professional head shot.
6. Prepare for the Interview
Do not assume that just because the hiring manager knows who you are that she will take it easy on you. You have to earn the position by preparing for the interview:
- List all possible job interview questions and come up with the best answers.
- Practice the interview with a friend.
- Prepare a list of references or a portfolio the hiring manager may want to see.
- Review your resume and make sure your online profiles are updated.
You can never overprepare for an interview. Keep in mind that expectations may be higher because the hiring manager knows you have tenure and a track record.
7. Take the Extra Step After the Interview
Selling your qualifications does not end after the interview. Send a thank you note to the hiring manager to show your appreciation for considering your application. It is a sign of professionalism that the hiring manager will surely remember.
Finally, if you do get the job, make sure you extend your sincere appreciation to everyone who helped you along the way. This especially holds true with your supervisor or immediate manager. Offer your services to assist the replacement and assure your former supervisor of a smooth and easy transition of work.