Rev up your resume to relocate
Hoping to relocate? Get the ball rolling on landing the right job in the right location with these expert resume and cover letter tips.
Let's face it: All other things being equal, employers would rather recruit local applicants than out-of-towners. It's more convenient to schedule interviews, and there are no hassles or cost concerns associated with relocation. But according to Monster data, about half of all job seekers are willing to move for the right job.
If you are planning to move or are just open to the idea of relocation, follow these tips to get your resume noticed.
Add all target locations
List all potential locations in the Monster Resume Builder's Where Would You Like to Work? fields (in the Resume Settings section). In the same section, answer "yes" to the "Are you willing to relocate?" question. When employers search resumes, they have the option to include job seekers who both reside in or are willing to work in the selected locations, so be sure your name makes their hit list.
Mention relocation at the top of your resume
Use the Resume Builder's Summary field to specify your relocation availability. If you're targeting a specific area, a statement such as "Searching for a position in the Dallas area" gets the point across. If you're more flexible, include a line such as "Available to relocate nationwide" or "Open to relocation to the Northeast." If you have firm plans to move, you can say "Relocating to Chicago in March 2018."
Elaborate in your cover letter
Your cover letter is the perfect place to explain your situation. Here are a few ways to word your relocation preferences:
- Targeting a specific area: "Please note that I will be relocating to Los Angeles in March 2018. Your opening presents the precise challenge I am seeking, and I would welcome the chance to discuss this opportunity with you."
- Returning to your hometown: This shows that you have roots in the target location, so you're more likely to stay put this time. "Although I have been successful in my current position, I am eager to make a permanent move back to Boise, Idaho." Don't be afraid to use humor and mention something unique to the town, such as the home team or weather.
- Keeping your options open: "At this point in my career, I am searching for a position that would be a perfect fit, so I am open to relocating for the right opportunity."
Be available for interviews
If you're targeting a specific area, plan to be available in the location for a week or so to attend face-to-face interviews. Your cover letter can mention that you will be available for interviews in the location for a certain period of time. You may also suggest an initial phone interview, and then arrange to meet in person if there is mutual interest.
Consider offering to pay relocation expenses
Some professionals with desirable credentials are aggressively recruited, and some employers are more than willing to pay for relocation, offer spousal relocation assistance and even help find a new house in the new location. These professionals can usually negotiate an attractive relocation package.
Other candidates face a more competitive job search, going up against local job seekers who may have comparable qualifications. If so, consider that you may open more doors for yourself if you are willing to pay relocation costs. Use this as a selling point in your cover letter with a line such as, "Please note that I am very interested in your opportunity and am willing to incur all relocation expenses" or "I will be relocating to Jacksonville in May at my own expense."
Don't use someone else's address
Some folks try to get an edge in a long-distance job search by fudging the address. This can cause problems; if your current job is located in one city and your address is far away, the hiring manager will probably be confused or concerned that your address is misleading. More problems may ensue if you're called for an interview and you're unable to get there right away. Then there's the uncomfortable discussion that you don't actually live in town. It's better to be honest about where you're living and use the above resume and cover letter strategies to show you're ready to pack your bags for the right opportunity.
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