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I applied for a job and had an introduction interview and the position was not really what I expected and I don't have much interest in it. However, the company (200 employees) had other departments which I am interested in working at, but they are currently not looking for anyone.

Is it better to contact the recruiter and say that I felt the job did not match my background, but mention that I worked with tasks the other departments do and I would be interested in working there, even it would be in the future?

The other option would be to proceed, get a job I don't want with the intention of changing department.

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Taking a job you don't want in the hopes of switching to a job you do want, without saying that that is what you're doing? Seems like a bad plan. There's no guarantee that you'd ever get the job that you do want, and that sounds like a recipe for quite a lot of unpleasantness... and that's aside from whatever resentment you might generate in the heart of your boss if/when they realize that you took the position in the hopes of leaving it as soon as possible.

Now, if you are willing to work in the position you were interviewed for for a while with the idea of switching over, you can say that when you ask about being able to work in other positions in the company. Small companies tend to be pretty flexible about things, with specific needs, and a willingness to be flexible back can help seal the deal. Still, I'd warn against starting under false pretenses. Better to have everything in the open from the start.

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I do not think that is the good strategy, let's see the different ways this can unfold if you take the job with the hope another department opens a position you are interested in:

  • It takes forever for another position to open
  • Another position opens but shortly after you joined so you are not even considered for the position change.
  • Another position opens but you are too valuable in your current position and you are not allowed to switch department.
  • Another position opens but you are in the middle of a project and you are not allowed to switch department.
  • Another position opens at the right time and you are allowed to switch department but you fail the interview/test and do not get the job
  • Another position opens at the right time and you are allowed to switch department but someone who also accepted his job in your current department with the idea to switch when a position opens up is first in the line for this job.
  • Another position opens at the right time and you are allowed to switch department and you get the job.

You will have a lot more freedom if you take a job somewhere else while telling the recruiter you are interested in the other departments and to contact you if they opens a position.

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