Explained: 5 things to consider when looking for a new job

Compensation, job location, work environment among most important factors to think about



By AP

Published: Sat 6 Aug 2022, 10:38 AM

Looking for a new job is a balancing act: some people change roles for a shorter commute or better salary, others want health insurance or flexible schedules, and still others are looking to work in a new or different industry.

Compensation, job location and work environment are among the most important factors you should consider when looking for a new role, according to Jill Gonzalez, a financial analyst from WalletHub.

Here are five key things to think about if you’re looking for a job (or wondering whether you should):

The current job market

While not all employers can afford to offer cost-of-living wage increases, some are increasingly open to providing other benefits, such as more remote work options, subsidized child care, or coverage of commuting expenses, according to Johnny C Taylor Jr, chief executive officer of the Society for Human Resource Management.

“With inflation, employees that are otherwise happy at work are forced to look for another job. It’s a retention problem,” he said. “You might have an employee who loves their workplace, but they’ll say, ‘I have to go across the street for the job that will pay me 20% more.’”

Some companies are also better prepared to withstand an economic downturn than others.

“The companies that are recession-resistant are typically those that sell consumer essentials, provide critical repair services, or manufacture or sell proprietary or specialized products,” said Gonzalez.

Demand for these goods and services typically stays more or less the same regardless of consumers’ budgets. The food industry, grocery stores, power plants, waste management, pharmaceutical, and healthcare companies also weather economic instability well, she said.

Salary

How much you’ll be paid is key, and how you look at your income depends in part on your industry. Conversations around pay are rarely transparent.

However, websites offer pay ranges for certain companies.

Commute

If you find a job that pays more per hour but requires a longer commute, it might not work out to be much of a pay raise, after factoring in fuel or the cost of public transit.

If you can take public transportation to your job or you pay for parking, check with your potential new employer about whether the company offers any benefits.

Benefits

For some, good benefits might include health insurance or retirement contributions. For others, working from home a few days a week or having on-the-job training are great bonuses.

Work environment

Blair Heitmann, a career expert for hiring platform LinkedIn, encourages job seekers to think about company culture when looking to change roles.

Reaching out to current and former employees, researching press and social media and even reading earnings reports are some of her recommendations.

Websites such as Indeed and Glassdoor have user-generated reviews of workplaces.

This research can also help give you insight into what makes a business run, which can give you a leg up in an interview, she said.

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Stephanie Stathas, a licensed therapist with Thriveworks, which provides in-person and online therapy, says that identifying healthy workplaces can help reduce job stress.

“If a work environment doesn’t have good management or doesn’t find that time to appreciate the individual for what they do, a lot of people can tend to feel down about themselves,” she said.

But it’s more nuanced than just appreciating workers, she added, as employees also need the ability to set boundaries with their workloads.


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