So you may have been doing your current job for a while. And you are comfortable with it. Then another job comes up in your company and you are considering applying, or have been invited to apply… Perhaps you think its time for a change, to take the next step in your career?
Before I even go any further, I want to discuss the fact that this is an internal move, so you need to tread lightly. If you were invited to apply for this role, before the role was even mentioned to you there were likely conversations between the hiring manager and your boss. And as soon as you express any interest (or even if you don’t) there may even be an expectation that you will accept the role – no matter what. What will the ramifications be if you turn it down? Can you even turn it down? Try and feel this out with your current boss before making any moves or having any conversations – because as soon as you start to have conversations about this, there may be an expectation that this is a done deal – especially if there are no other applicants.
If you do decide that this is something you may want to considerer apply for – think carefully as the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence. There is a bigger picture to consider here before you jump the fence!
Career development – this is probably the biggest reason you are considering the new role – does it take you up the ladder? Does it give you more responsibility? More exposure? New tasks? New learnings? This is the big selling point people will use to encourage you to take the role. Make sure you really delve into this piece:
- If you can, talk to the current person in the role and understand what they actually do on a day to day basis – their perception of pros and cons. How long were they in the role and why are they leaving now?
- Talk to a few people who worked with them for their perspective of the role and the person you are replacing – because you will be perceived as doing the same job even if they rework the title/description on paper. I was recently offered a role to replace a colleague – they told me it would be made into a “strategy” position, however I would be replacing an admin/junior employee. My concern here is that when they introduced me it would be “this is XXX’s replacement” and so despite it now being a strategy role, the perception would be that I am an admin/junior employee.
- Talk to the hiring manager to see if they plan to change and/or expand the role. My boss expanded my current job role extensively immediately after my taking it – despite what it said on the description.
Salary / grade level – perhaps you are looking for a grade or salary increase. Some hiring managers will be evasive on this but confirm that in fact there will be an increase as soon as you can. My recent role I told the hiring manager up front I would not accept unless there was an increase – and they said they would do “what they could”. I did get an increase but they also told me at the time nobody else was getting salary increases for new roles so I was lucky (and a colleague confirmed the same thing – he was promoted into a new role with no salary change.. he quit a month later).
Workload – Will this mean more work? More responsibility? Direct employees? More stress? Extended working hours? More travel? Is it worth it… especially if there is no increase in salary?
New manager – Who is the new manager? What are they like to work for? Are they a micromanager or will they let you be autonomous? If you can, talk to some of their current and even better past employees and get a feel for the manager’s style. Current reports likely wont tell you if they dont like the manager and will dodge round it – but will give glowing praise if they do like them. You can ask the manager for their input too but be wary as managers often talk the talk but don’t walk the walk. For me, this one is key. The manager makes or breaks the job, not the role itself. So any doubts on the manager, walk away.
Good luck in whatever your decision is!