I am currently working as Software Developer and I am about (or planning) to resign/leave my current employer soon. But I got some difficult situations (for me) applying for new job while employed in my current employer.


  • Current employer is very strict especially about time/schedule
  • Working hours 8am - 5pm
  • Vacation leaves should file one month before the vacation date (whole or half day)
  • Sick Leaves strictly require medical certificate

Based on my experience applying a job, it usually scheduled on weekdays and usually takes 2hrs-4hrs (or 6hrs) to complete a series of interviews and exams (depends every company). And attending interviews and exams on early morning, lunch or after work is not much feasible.

So there, it's pretty hard for me, I got no problem on my previous job applications because of the flexible working schedule in my previous employers.

My question is: How to attend interviews and exams while employed in a strict company during weekdays (8am - 5pm)?

BTW, I am planning to leave within 2 or 3 months. I just want to secure a new job before leaving my current employer.

  • 1
    possible duplicate of Is it considered acceptable to take vacation time for job searching?
    – gnat
    Aug 15, 2014 at 6:03
  • 1
    Can't you just take unpaid leave? Even a full day is not much of a hit on your salary in the big picture. Aug 15, 2014 at 8:01
  • 2
    @Juha, I can take unpaid leave but they will interrogate after returning to work. They will also classify that as "Job Abandonment".
    – jpr
    Aug 15, 2014 at 8:08
  • 2
    Isn't the discussion here in the comments (as well as the 'possible duplicate' one) irrelevant? -> "Vacation Leaves should file one month before the vacation date" is a much more important bottleneck. jpr has very little chance if he can only make interview appointments that are +1 month in the future.
    – user8036
    Aug 15, 2014 at 19:07
  • 4
    Well I guess you know one of the questions to ask in your upcoming job interview(s). Don't ever work for a company as draconian as the one you are currently at.
    – Dunk
    Aug 15, 2014 at 21:38

2 Answers 2


It's not quite the same situation, but when I was recently interviewing looking for a new role 200 miles away from my current location, what I did was essentially to book a couple of days off well in advance, and then managed to arrange all my in person interviews over the course of those two days. The crucial thing here is to explain your situation to both any recruiters you may be working with and to the companies you're interviewing with - my experience was that they will generally be pretty accommodating. That all said, I did miss out on one interview due to my lack of flexibility.

Putting my other hat on as someone involved with interviewing people, if there's a candidate that's good enough that we're going to get them in for an in-person interview, all the companies I've worked at would generally be prepared to move things around to suit that person's schedule, particularly if they're giving a valid reason why they've got a restricted set of times they're available.

  • Hi @Philip, thanks for the answer, I also consider this solution before, my only concern here is that I need to file/book one month ahead. Maybe I should apply one week before that date (Hoping that interviewers will respond earlier). Philip thanks again, seems that this one is better than leaving with no next job :)
    – jpr
    Aug 15, 2014 at 8:16
  • 3
    @jpr The whole idea of this is to get around the whole "needing to book leave one month ahead" problem - you book (say) 2 days off at the end of September, then when applying for jobs you put in big letters on your resume something like "Due to strict schedules in my current role, I am available for in person interviews only on <whatever dates you've booked off>". Aug 15, 2014 at 8:27

Were I in your situation, given the arbitrary and as mentioned above draconian rules you're subject to, I'd simply lie to my current employer.

What would happen if you called in and said "I'm having a personal emergency. It's not sick, it's a family emergency, etc, etc." Or what if you had a logistical issue like car trouble or a plumbing emergency? You can just go ahead and tell your employer that is happening.

Also consider the worst case scenario. Would your current employer terminate you for taking an emergency personal day? It's possible, but not likely. And if so, you're already in the process of finding a new gig, so no REAL harm there.

They're being ridiculous about scheduling, you're in the right (I'd say morally obligated) to be ridiculous back.

I mean, in my experience interviewing people, we wouldn't wait 1 month from first contact to interview. That just isn't an option for the companies I've worked for.

And don't think for 1 second your current company would give you 1 month notice if they were going to fire you. Remember, it's not personal, it's business.

  • Thanks spencer, I think I can do this once (or twice) especially for emergency interview(s). :)
    – jpr
    Aug 18, 2014 at 0:52
  • 3
    Personally, I'd strongly recommend against lying to your employer under almost any circumstances. Imagine the conversation if they found out: "Dear OldEmployer, could you provide us a reference for jpr? Thanks, NewEmployer." "Dear NewEmployer, Sure. jpr didn't like some of our policies, but rather than discussing the situation with us, he lied to us. Thanks, OldEmployer". "Dear jpr, As a result of the references we received, we have decided not to offer you a position at this time. Thanks, NewEmployer". Aug 18, 2014 at 7:43
  • 3
    @PhilipKendall "almost any circumstances" sounds like a lot. Some draconian employers, like perhaps this one, purposefully have strict rules about taking time off to discourage looking for new jobs. If NewEmployer isn't able to understand this, I suggest finding MoreUnderstandingEmployerOfTheKindWhichExistsInAbundance. Sep 9, 2015 at 1:50

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