Applying to another position while already having an offer

Application career progression
New answer on Nov 06, 2020
7 Answers
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Anonymous A asked on Jul 08, 2020

Hi everyone,

I hope you are all doing well.

I currently have an offer to join a consulting firm in Canada as an analyst (entry level) within a division (back office type) that is not really aligned with my career aspirations. I am due to start in about one month. Prior to receiving this offer I also undertook a summer internship within the same division.

This same company has recently opened its 2021 early applications and more importantly positions within another division that I am interested in and that I believe are more suited to my prior experiences (previous summer internship).

I feel that I am in a good position to apply and take my chances. However I would greatly appreciate your input regarding the following options :

1) Given that the application deadline for those early positions is in one month, would it be wise to apply now without risking to lose my current offer and essentially my credibility ?

2) Should I be patient, and wait till I start working, then apply later in the year when another application window opens while knowing that the competition will be stronger?

Please keep in mind that the potential new role will start next summer, which will still allow me to work for one year in the current back office type position.

Thank you for your much appreciated help.

(edited)

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Francesco
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replied on Jul 08, 2020
#1 Coach for Sessions (4.000+) | 1.400+ 5-Star Reviews | Proven Success (➡ InterviewOffers.com) | Ex BCG | 9Y+ Coaching

Hi there,

I agree with the other comments, it doesn’t make much sense to apply now without clear communication within the firm. You may end in the weird situation that your boss knows you applied and the application is rejected. Not a good outcome.

I would suggest the following approach:

  1. Start your new job, giving 110% from the start. I understand it is not the ideal job, but you want to do so for your next move
  2. Once you have developed some “equity” in the firm, create some relationships within the other division
  3. Once you have a strong internal connection, casually mention you would be interested in the job of Division 2 and see if it leads to a positive reaction. If not, try to find a new connection and/or understand the reasons for that
  4. Once you win insider support, try to understand what could be your boss opinion on an internal transfer. Ensure him/her you would do just if it is fine for the current division. Show him/her the other Division would be interested in your support
  5. If all this fails, you may want to look for a competitor with an equivalent position. Your initial effort would still pay off as you could show good results in your CV

If you want to read a great book on negotiation to prepare in advance, I recommend “Never Split the Difference” by Chris Voss – it has all the tips and tricks on the subject.

Best,

Francesco

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Anonymous replied on Jul 08, 2020

Dear A,

I would recommend you to be patient to first start on the new job and then apply internally. Becasue now, you are applying externally, which baresome risks and lower chances for you. So, start a new job and apply later on when the new window opens and you will get your chance.

Other than that, I would also recommend you to have a look outside of the company and may be you will find another offers on the job market.

If you need any help with your career advice, feel free to reach out.

Best,

André

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Robert
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replied on Jul 08, 2020
McKinsey offers w/o final round interviews - 100% risk-free - 10+ years MBB coaching experience - Multiple book author

Hi Anonymous,

'Secretly' applying to other positions in the same company is definitely a very dangerous thing to do. Please consider that the persons involved can only judge by what they see - which is you are hopping around in the company, and they might well assume you are hopping around outside the company as well. So don't do that.

The most reasonable options looks like staying one year in your current position and building your profile. If you are an outperformer, everybody in the company will be happy to have you, so that would also cover your point that competition would be stronger (I'd always prefer a company-internal outperformer than somebody else I don't know and can only evaluate based on the limited recruiting time available with a candidate). Looks pretty straight-forward to me.

Alternatively, in case you are really unhappy in your current position, you can also reach out to your HR department and openly discuss your issue. Please keep in mind that your main argumentation should not be self-centered (which is why you want to change) but 'customer-centric' (the company being your 'customer' - so think about a solid argumentation how your strengths and background can be put to use better in the other position). Without knowing the specifics of the company, this might cause a bit of turbulence in HR - but hey, if it's to the benefit of your company if your profile matches better with the other position, what should be wrong about having that discussion in the first place?

Hope that helps - if so, please be so kind and give it a thumbs-up with the green upvote button below!

Robert

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Clara
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replied on Jul 08, 2020
McKinsey | Awarded professor at Master in Management @ IE | MBA at MIT |+180 students coached | Integrated FIT Guide aut

Hello!

Congrats on your offer!

What you are suggesting is a very dangerous approach.

Even if it´s a diferent division, HR is common in most cases, hence chances they find out are very high.

It can leave a very bad impression, since they can also think that you are doing the same with other companies outside.

If you are really interested, I would honestly be upfront with HR and talk about it.

Hope it helps!

Cheers,

Clara

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Udayan
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replied on Jul 08, 2020
Top rated McKinsey Case & PEI coach/Multiple real offers/McKinsey EM in New York /6 years McKinsey recruiting experience

Applying to a new role in the same company after accepting an offer is sure to set some alarm bells going. From their perspective you have interned in a role that you enjoyed and then accepted an offer to work there as well. A last minute change will not be looked at favorably. And especially do not apply directly via the online portal that would be a bad move.

Here are some things you can do

1. Wait a couple of years (or at least one year) and apply for an internal transfer if those are allowed in the firm. This way you have given the role a real shot and can use that experience to say that it is not a good fit.

2. Reach out to HR, schedule a call to discuss some of these fears you have and ask them for their advice. There is a risk they may not be very happy with you but it is better you do this now and not apply without informing them. If they reach back out to the team with your concerns the team could be understanding and talk to you or they could be unhappy and rescind the offer so be careful what you say. I would be happy to help you frame the conversation.

3. Apply to a different firm - this would be a good backup anyway

Best,

Udayan

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Sidi
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replied on Jul 09, 2020
McKinsey Senior EM & BCG Consultant | Interviewer at McK & BCG for 7 years | Coached 350+ candidates secure MBB offers

Hi!

Please don't sabotage yourself here. If this is an interesting avenue for you, then you will have plenty of time to work with the firm to make it possible. Just applying externally without communication will come across extremely weird.

Cheers, Sidi

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Gaurav
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replied on Nov 06, 2020
Ex-Mckinsey|Certified Career Coach |Placed 500+ candidates at MBB & other consultancies

Hi there,

Honestly I would recommend you to take this offer and wait for the next year. It could be very difficult to apply right now as you have to prepare as well as possible.

So, relax, take the offer and prepare for the next year if it will be still your current interest.

Do you need any further help?

All the best,

GB

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Francesco gave the best answer

Francesco

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