How to get time off for a job interview.

You’re ready for that interview and a job change. You’ve launched your resume out into cyberspace, and soon enough potential employers will reach out for interviews. A little strategic planning beforehand can help alleviate stress when it comes to juggling interviews while working a full-time job. Here are a few tips to make the process a little more manageable.

Take a Personal Day

Once you’ve landed that interview for your dream job, and you expect the interview to run long, or you need considerable travel time to the interview location, taking a personal day may be the best solution. But be sure to avoid taking time off on necessary workdays. Also, give your current manager as much notice as possible and complete necessary work in advance so as to not seem suspicious or uncommitted. Even better, try for a Monday or Friday interview and make it a long weekend.

Avoid Specifics When Requesting Time Off

You’re not obligated to give your employer details when requesting time off. Citing your need to attend to personal or family responsibilities is sufficient. Or, if you prefer to keep it even more vague, simply say you have an appointment or a commitment. Either way, you’re being truthful to minimize risking current employment. However, in some cases, you may need an alibi for managers or coworkers who ask too many questions. Whatever story you do give, the more ordinary it is, the less curious they’ll be––and less likely to continue to pry. Avoid stories about funerals and medical procedures, which are sure to stir curiosity.

Schedule the Interview Before or After Work

Be honest with the prospective employer about your desire not to jeopardize your current employment. Ask if someone is available to conduct the interview before or after your workday. Depending on the industry, a weekend interview may be an option too.

Request a Phone or Video Interview

The prospective employer may be willing to conduct a preliminary interview via phone or video chat. Then, afterward, if you both are interested in continuing the interview process, the hiring manager could schedule an in-person interview. This may alleviate the need to request multiple days off from work if you anticipate receiving several interview requests.

Accept only Serious Interviews

If you’re entertaining a job that you’re quasi-interested in or a job that you’re likely not a good candidate for, you might want to rethink scheduling the interview during your workday. It’s not worth losing your current job for a position that’s unlikely to come to fruition. Or, consider a requesting phone or video interview in this case too.

Whatever you do, the goal is to try to keep the situation as stress-free as possible. Stress about skipping work can cause unnecessary anxiety, which can keep you from being your best during the interview. Ready to start exploring new job opportunities, ICR Staffing Services is here for you. Learn more about our services for job seekers. 

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