Changing Jobs & Staying at the Same Company

By Danna Redmond

If you are looking for a job change or career shift nothing says that you have to change companies. Often times making a switch to a new role might be better to do at the same company where you already have a track record, already know where the bathroom is and how the overall company works and you don’t have to change benefits – all positive benefits in my opinion.

You can have different careers without changing the name on your paycheck (or changing your email address).  In my own career, I had four very different careers all at the same company – 1. Recruiting, 2. IT Product Management, 3. Online Advertising Platforms, 4. Customer Technical Support.   Each role had something(s) in common with the role I had directly before it and directly after it.  However, each new role allowed me to stretch in a new area and learn new skills that propelled me forward.  I would have never predicted that when I started as a Recruiter I would eventually end up as the director of a global technical support team.

As I’ve mentioned there are many advantages to changing your career but staying at the same company.  If you have a good reputation and good performance reviews then that information follows you.  If you have had a few stumbles along the way it also a good opportunity to re-make yourself and your reputation in an environment that you are already familiar with.  You already have a network of people that you know in the company.  And of course, some of the things you might not think about like you don’t lose built up vacation time or need to wait a probationary period before benefits kick in or your email address doesn’t change)

Finding a new role at your existing company

Look around to see what other parts of the company have roles with similar skills as you have.

Likely it won’t be the same title but look for all the things you have in common with the role – is it the same customers but different role, is it same skills but different technology?

Look for special projects where you can lend your expertise. 

Are you a Financial Analyst -  is your finance department looking to implement a new finance system then volunteer to work with the IT team as the Subject Matter Expert (SME?)  Do you have a passion for writing content – is your org embarking on a rebranding process then volunteer to help with content.  Is your company doing a request for proposal with new vendors then volunteer to be on the evaluation team.  All of these activities can help expand your view of what is happening at your company and can open up doors for you.  In my case, my leap from Recruiting from IT came when I volunteered to be a recruiting process subject matter expert when the recruiting department was implementing a new candidate tracking system.

Network internally.

Remember that person you met at the one company conference, reach out to them to have coffee and see what is happening in their part of the company.   Be curious – next time you are at a company meeting, introduce yourself to the person next to you and see where they work and what they do. There was that one person who left your team last year for a new internal role, look them up and invite them to coffee to see how they are doing and learn about their new role.

Update your resume. 

Since this is a resume that will be used internally you can use internal jargon or acronyms that only mean something within your company walls. Be sure to include any new responsibilities or accomplishments from your current role.  Did you win an award or receive a recognition? If so, include those also.   Check out the great Resume Templates by Texty Cafe.  

Making the switch to your new role internally

Onboarding to the new role. 

Create your learning plan by looking at any internal trainings available for your new team or role, find new mentors and allies who can help you come up to speed quickly.  Put as much effort into the onboarding as you would if you were starting at a new company.   Check out our blog post and podcast on "New Job, Now What" for more great advice about onboarding.

Communicate with your new manager and your current/previous manager. 

Work out a transition timeline that works for both teams.  Be prepared that you might need to do two roles for a short period of time or at least be available to answer questions for your previous team after you transition. Remember you still need to manage your reputation internally so be a good corporate citizen.

Build credibility quickly and manage relationships. 

You want to make a good impression on your new team and colleagues but you also need to be sure you don’t burn any bridges with your previous teammates and colleagues.  Companies often reorganize and you never know when you might end up working these people again.

If you are considering looking for a new job, you should at least consider looking at your current company with the same effort that you look outside the company.  You might find your dream job is in the office down the hall.

Photo by Caleb Woods on Unsplash