Debra Auerbach | October 17, 2018
You're in a rut and just need a change. You're moving to be closer to family. Your significant other just received a job offer he or she can't refuse. Whatever the reason, making the decision to relocate can be both exciting and stressful, especially when it comes to finding a new job.
If you approach your search the right way, however, you can successfully pursue a new career in a new location. Here are some tips to search for an out-of-state job.
Read the job posting carefully
Jackie Werblo, head coach at Convex Leadership, says that before you apply, make sure the employer is willing to consider someone from out of state. “If it states locals only, use your cover letter to give the reason you should be considered with the locals,” Werblo recommends. “For example, you are returning home and have a residence in the area, after years living elsewhere.” While it may present a challenge, if it’s a dream job, it’s still worth making a case for why you should be in the running.
Do your homework
A new city may seem exciting – but make sure you do your research, including visiting the new location, before making any moves. “Be sure you want to live in the community where the job is located,” Werblo says. “Once you accept and move, the bottom line is you will likely remain in the community for some time. Be sure to look around and evaluate your new community. Decide what is important to you and establish your own set of criteria against which to weigh the move.”
Werblo also says it’s important to understand the cost of living difference between your former and new community, before you accept any offer. “Be certain you have taken this difference into serious consideration, before accepting the new role.”
Use your cover letter wisely
The cover letter provides a great platform for you to explain why you’re moving – and that you’re committed to doing so if you get the job. “The candidate should be the one to first mention the relocation, in the cover letter,” says Lauren Milligan, career advancement coach at ResuMAYDAY.
Milligan says to make a strong case for why the relocation will suit both your personal and professional goals.
“Let the employer know if you are relocating back to an area you used to live. If that’s not the case, let them know you’ve already toured the area extensively with your family, who is looking forward to the excellent school system, or little league baseball team, or anything else that shows permanence. State your expected move-in date, and let the employer know that you’re moving to the area for reasons other than this job – that the job isn’t the only motivation that’s guiding you and your family. A well-written, friendly and upbeat cover letter is a great way to get your foot in the door, despite not being a local candidate.”
Consider relocation expenses
If the employer isn’t specifically looking for an out-of-state worker, they may not be willing to pay for relocation expenses. But it is still worth exploring your options and seeing if there’s any room for negotiation. “Be sure to consider the costs of relocation before considering an offer; learn from your perspective employer [about] their financial support and assistance for relocation. Avoid surprises through careful research and communication with your prospective employer,” Werblo says.
Found the perfect out-of-state job? Here are 5 questions you should be asking in your interview.