Wondering how to find a job in a new city? The truth is, it can be challenging. After all, you are not there already, and you can’t just go to an interview on a moment’s notice.
But along with challenges, moving to a new city presents tremendous opportunity. For example, many of the cities that made Glassdoor's Best Cities for Jobs offer tons of job openings, high job satisfaction and great salaries. Some research even shows that moving to a big city can boost your earning potential.
If you really want to find a job in a new city, what you need to do is find ways to convince potential employers that you are the person to hire regardless of location. To do that, you need to show them that you have all of the skills and qualifications necessary to do the work you are applying for.
With that in mind, here are 10 tips that will help you land a job in a new city.
1. Don’t Wait Until the Last Minute
It is never a good idea to wait until just before you are ready to move to start applying for jobs. You should actually begin the job search process as soon as you know you are going to be moving. Start joining job search pages, and see what type of work is available in the area that you will be moving to. The sooner you start, the better. If you get an interview immediately, tell them when you intend to move, and when you will be available.
2. Talk to Your Connections
Chances are that you know at least a few people in the city you are moving to. Talk to them, and let them know that you are looking for a job. They can recommend jobs that they may know are currently open or that will be coming up, and tell you about other opportunities in the area. They can also recommend you to business owners that they may know, and may even be able to set up interviews for you. They can also help you with many other aspects of your move, including finding a place to live.
3. Consider Locations
There are many considerations when choosing a work location. For instance, will you need to commute, or is it within walking distance? Choose a central point, and then choose companies within a specific radius of that point, so you don’t have a lot of commute time. Start with a 10-mile radius, and work out from there. Unless you don’t mind a lot of commuting, try to stay within a 25-mile radius of that central point (preferably less in areas with heavy traffic).
You'll also want to consider factors like a city's hiring opportunity, salary, job satisfaction and more. Wondering which cities in particular you should look at? Here are the top five locations on Glassdoor's Best Cities for Jobs list:
4. Sign Up for Email Job Alerts
There are many job search sites that offer alerts. You can enter the criteria you are looking for, including location, salary, type of work, etc. There are also many companies that offer their own job alerts, so make sure that you sign up for any that pertain to you. You may not be interested in every job that pops up in one of the emails, but if you don’t sign up, you could be missing out on exactly the type of job that you are looking for.
5. Consider Interviews
You should always be available for an interview online, and whenever possible, be able to travel for an interview. Some employers only want to interview candidates in person, and if you are not able to get there, you are likely not going to get the job. Luckily, many employers don’t mind doing interviews via Skype. You get to talk face to face, without having to travel for the interview. If you do this, make sure that you are dressed as you would for an in-person interview.
6. Be Prepared
If you are able to travel for interviews, make sure that you are prepared. Look up all of the free Wi-Fi hotspots in the area, including restaurants and coffee shops like Cheesecake Factory, Waffle House, IHOP, and Chop House. After all, you are going to want to explore your new area once you arrive, and eating out is a great way to start.
7. Ask About Working Remotely
When considering how to find a job in a new city, remember: You don't always need to change employers! If you have a job you don't want to leave, talk to your manager and see if they will allow you to work remotely. All you need is a space to work and a laptop, and you can do the same work that you do in the office. Many companies are allowing people to do this nowadays, and the great thing is that you have a lot of freedom.
8. Ask for a Transfer
If your company has offices in other cities, another option is to ask if you can get a transfer to one of those locations. If you are a dedicated employee who has proven that you can get the job done, chances are that they are going to be willing to accommodate you. If they happen to be setting up a new office in the area that you are moving to, they may even want you to be part of the team that gets the new office up and running.
9. Consider Taking Temporary Jobs
If you are unable to find a full-time job before you move, you may want to consider temporary work. There are plenty of temp agencies out there that are looking for a variety of skills, and you can be working until a full-time position comes along. In addition to temp agencies, consider doing freelance work. There are many websites that you can use to find freelance positions that pay very well, including Upwork.com and Freelancer.com.
10. Take Advantage of Social Media
You might be surprised at the power of social media when it comes to finding employment. There are several options. Start with your LinkedIn profile. Set your desired geography, and make sure that you join groups that are specific to that area. Join Facebook groups, and check out the Facebook pages for the various companies that you would be interested in working at that are located in the area you are moving to.
Moving is stressful enough — don't let worrying about how to find a job in a new city preoccupy you more than it needs to. Follow these simple tips, and your odds of scoring a new job in a new locale will greatly increase.