February 24, 2020

Starting A Job Search When You Want A Promotion

by Amy Stuntz

You’re not unhappy, but you’re also not completely satisfied. Career progression is a major reason why people change jobs. If your employer cannot offer an internal promotion, then you need to look at another company. When that time comes, it’s important that you search jobs at a higher level, interview with the right answer to the question about motivation, and get an offer that feels like a bump in title, pay, & responsibilities.  

How to Research "Next Level Up" Jobs

Job boards are an easy place to start.

  • Search job titles with that +1 Factor. For example, if you’re an Underwriter, add “senior” or “II” to the Boolean search or keyword filters.
  • Filter job titles by Leader, Manager, or Supervisor
  • Look up Career Pages at competitors. If they are growing or have done recent promotions, the press releases will give you get info on who to contact directly.  

How to Answer Interview Questions About A Promotion

  • Be ready to talk about successes and accomplishments in your current role. Sell yourself on being ready to take the next step in your career.
  • Come prepared to the interview knowing what skills and requirements the employer is looking for. Check out Glassdoor’s online reviews to read employee reviews about company culture, promotions, workload, expectations, etc.
  • What new skills have you obtained to bring value to this new organization? Do you need further education or certification? Make sure you are accurately gauging where the gaps are between your current skill set and those required in the more senior role you are trying to obtain.

How to Secure An Offer That Is Truly A Promotion

  • Make certain hiring managers understand you are running towards their opportunity– not running away from your current situation.
  • Know your worth. Ask the opinion of trusted advisers and mentors about compensation so you’re in line with the market and don’t hurt your chances of getting the job offer.
  • Offer references to the hiring managers of professional contacts who recognize your talents and support you in taking this next step.


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