I've decided that I've finally had enough of the UK and would like to move to VA, USA where I have friends. Obviously I'm going to need to find a job, but before I go looking on job sites I'd quite like to find out whether the company that I'm currently employed by has any vacancies in their VA or DC offices.

Unfortunately there is no global intranet site that I can simply look for vacancies on, and I'm hoping that maybe my 10 years of excellent service in the UK office may open some doors that wouldn't otherwise be posted on the intranet anyway.

I don't know anyone personally in any of the US offices, so any emails that I send to the department managers over there could quite possibly find their way back to my manager here in the UK. Whether or not this would cause friction, I'm not sure.

What would be the best way to approach the situation?


Not sure why your emails to the offices abroad should cause friction with your manager in the UK, unless your manager is in the habit of taking employees' leaving as a personal affront.

You are looking for a change of setting, which qualifies as leaving for a personal reason. You are not leaving because of any dissatisfaction with either your manager or the office you are working in and you should make that clear in any of your emails to the American offices.

Being restless, curious and wanting to get out of your comfort level and rise to the challenge of making it in a different country are perfectly valid reasons for seeking a transfer. Again, if word gets back to him, you should tell him up front that your reasons for seeking a transfer have nothing to do with him or the UK office. If they made it comfortable for you, it's certainly not their fault that you want to get out of your comfort level. If they made it easy for you to stay put, it's not their fault that you are feeling restless. And you could tell him that if successful in seeking a transfer, that you would still want to stay in touch with him.

I usually say that lucky are those who get to see the world through the eyes of a soldier, a merchant or a scholar - I learned so much from being compelled to look at the world from various perspectives :)

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  • Thanks for the reply, that's very insightful. It almost makes me wonder if I should approach my manager before speaking to the USA office and let them know the situation? – user27590 Oct 8 '14 at 13:54
  • Approach the USA office first. You'll look silly if you approached the manager first, and the USA office says no. Plan this like a murder, where the victim is the last one to know :) None of these probes/explorations mean a thing until you get a bite. Bites don't mean a thing until you get interviews, and interviews don't mean a thing until you get an offer in hand AND an American visa. At which point, you have something solid to tell your manager. If you have nothing solid to report, then you are just wasting time talking to your manager about what you are doing: your manager's and your own. – Vietnhi Phuvan Oct 8 '14 at 14:15
  • Does your company have any documentation on transfers? My company specifies that you must speak to your manager first, then HR who passes your information on to other teams with open positions. – mkennedy Oct 8 '14 at 18:05

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