By: Arizona Advertising Guild

Embarking on a job hunt can be a daunting task. Job hunting in another state? Now that’s a whole other ball game. The challenges faced by professionals looking for a change of scenery can often feel too big to tackle. The good news – we’ve got you covered. If you’re ready to take the leap, here are four tips for job hunting in another state.

  1. Have a game plan.

You may read that and go, “well, duh.” But take a minute to really think about it.

  • Are you serious about moving? Or, are you just testing the waters to see what’s out there?
  • What’s your anticipated timeline?
  • Are you planning to move regardless of if you have a job offer prior to going? If not, how quickly can you move?
  • Do you need a relocation allotment or can you move at your own expense?
  • Are you willing to travel for interviews even if the company is unable to pay for them?

There are a multitude of things to consider before you set out on this journey of searching for a job out of state. You don’t have to know all the answers, but you should have a general idea of what you plan to do. At some point in the interview process, these questions will arise.

  1. Remove unnecessary information from your resume.

Before anyone ever speaks to you, the first thing they see in the interview process is your resume and cover letter. Unfortunately, an out-of-state address can raise a red flag and too many assumptions are left to be made by people that have never met you, like:

  • It will take them months to move and we don’t have that much time
  • We don’t offer relocation assistance, so they won’t be interested

The reality is, your home address has nothing to do with your skill level or expertise. It’s not that you should withhold this information forever. What you should do is give yourself a chance to showcase your knowledge before you drop your impending move. This is especially true when you are only planning to move if you receive a job offer.

  1. Be honest.

At some point, the subject of moving will come up. The last thing you want to do is get started on the wrong foot with a lie. If an employer asks you to schedule an in-person interview and you can’t make it work, ask if they are open to a phone call or skype session for the first round. Explain that you currently live out of state but are planning to move by “XX” date. This is where Tip #1 comes in handy. If you have a plan in place, you won’t panic when the topic comes up. If you’re confident and composed in your answer, it’s less likely to alarm your potential new employer.

  1. Put your networking hat on.

According to an article written by Business Insider, experts estimate anywhere from 70 to 85 percent of people landed their current job through networking. That’s no small statistic. In fact, it’s HUGE. Just think about it – as little as 15 percent of the population was able to get their job just by applying. That’s mind blowing!

Networking is crucial in today’s job market. But how do you network in a state you’ve never lived in? Here are a couple things you can do:

  • Reach out to anyone you know who lives in the area. Social media is a powerful thing. Check in with your college buddy and see what he’s been up to. Let him know you’re looking to move into town and would appreciate any introductions or insights they might have.
  • Utilize LinkedIn to its full potential. It’s not just about updating your experience or gaining a few more connections. There are so many groups to join on LinkedIn that provide you the opportunity to connect with individuals in another state. It also allows you to join the local business conversation and showcase your expertise. Just be sure when reaching out to specific individuals that you personalize each invitation to connect. No one wants to feel like they’re being spammed.

If the idea of starting fresh in a new state is music to your ears, then we hope these tips for job hunting in another state will make the process a little easier. If you’re still looking for a place to call home, we encourage you to consider Arizona. Named one of the fastest growing job markets in the nation, there’s sure to be a fit for you. If you want to learn more about marketing, public relations or graphic design opportunities in Arizona, read this brief intro on the Arizona Advertising Guild. Then be sure to check out the local job postings board for current openings. Best of luck in your job hunt!