Unfortunately, the only way to be offered outplacement services is if you’ve just found yourself “outplaced,” or let go from your employer. Which is usually not the most pleasant of scenarios – though I have worked with several outplaced clients who are actually excited about the chance to look for something new and to have the help of a career coach along the way.
If you’re offered outplacement services – use them! It’s free help to you on a job search and can provide invaluable assistance during a time that you may or may not have been expecting to be out of a job.
Here are 3 reasons why it’s a great idea:
Writing a compelling resume and cover letter, networking, interviewing, and salary negotiation are all skills that, like anything else, get better with practice. Especially if it’s been a few years and your skills are a little rusty, outplacement services offer you a low-pressure environment to practice all of these things without the stress of a high-pressure environment and potentially losing out on a great job by not performing your best during an interview or submitting a poorly written resume.
A career coach can guide you in the right direction on a resume and cover letter, can offer important insight about how to answer interview questions appropriately and to negotiate offers professionally. The more often you take interviews, the more often you network – the better you’ll get at both, and a career coach can provide you with ample opportunity to polish those skills and give you tips on how to network and interview.
Many job searchers enlist friends and family to review resumes and to get feedback about how to answer interview questions, which is great and helpful in itself, but might not give you the whole picture. Perhaps your friends or family won’t offer you constructive feedback for how to improve because they don’t want to hurt your feelings, or they can’t offer specific tips because they might not know enough about recruiting or writing great resumes or answering interview questions.
That’s where your outplacement services can help. Particularly with Purple Ink’s outplacement services – your career coach is also a recruiter and HR consultant who can give you the inside scoop about recruiting processes and offer advice on how to stand out amongst other candidates. Our outplacement service providers share constructive insight in a supportive, helpful way to make sure you’re learning and growing through the process.
If nothing else, using outplacement services can get your job search on track, and perhaps, keep it on track. It will help you think about and define what you want from your next job, help you craft a message about who you are and what you’re looking for, and get you started on your personal marketing materials (resume, cover letter, LinkedIn profile). It can be a good kick-start to any search.
And, with some levels of our outplacement services, we provide accountability check ins and unlimited support throughout the duration of each client’s search. Similar to our On-Call Career Coaching – we don’t limit the amount of time we spend with each client. At a minimum, we check in regularly to see that movement is happening on the search and to help at any point our clients ask or seem stuck.
Outplacement services can be the key to keeping your job search short and are a free part of many severance packages – there’s no reason not to use them and lots of ways it might help!