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I am currently employed as a program manager within a city government agency. This is not a prospective employer but my current employer. Recently several employees, including my supervisor and myself, have been asked to re-apply for the jobs they currently hold. The positions have been posted publicly. I no longer enjoy this position due to poor management as well as several shifts and re-structuring that have occurred over the last year resulting in an increase in required late evenings. Work/life balance is nil. I have been given the responsibilities of two program managers and not compensated to the level either were paid. And yes I did ask.

Suffice it to say, I have began to explore alternative career options. I re-applied because a friend advised that if I did not, it could be stated that I did not try to maintain my employment if I filed for unemployment benefits.

I have been told that I will also have to re-interview for my position. At the first opportunity I will leave this position and I feel joy rather than dread at the prospect of someone else being hired. When this re-interview occurs, should I lie about my plans to find other employment if asked? The alternative may be that they "re-hire" me and I leave soon after leaving a gap where another applicant could have been hired instead.

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  • These are my two concerns. Being "re-hired" and leaving soon after. I don't think that would build good will amongst those who have to start the process again when they could have hired someone else to begin with. However, it's not unheard of for supervisors to be peeved when told their employees are looking for another position. – user36493 May 28 '15 at 20:56
  • The linked question discusses telling prospective employers that you are applying to other employers besides them. It's not speaking about a current position and how telling one's current employer who has required you to re-apply and re-interview for your own job may effect your current position. Mitigating risk is what I am attempting to do as well. – user36493 May 28 '15 at 21:14
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    Once they told you that you would have to re-apply for your current job you would be a fool not to look for another job. No need to tell them what any reasonable person would do. Why help them out? Just take the path of least resistance and re-apply. Don't tell them you are out are looking. Once you have a written job offer in hand simply resign. – paparazzo May 28 '15 at 22:49
  • Have you considerred screwing up the interview badly enough that they can't "rehire" you to expedite the unemployment benefits and open up your time for looking for a better job? "The job description on paper doesn't match the duties that I've experienced. Now that I'm being rehired can I expect my duties to match this description. No, hmm I'm going to have to get some council before I enter into a bad faith contract." – Myles May 29 '15 at 16:50
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When they told everybody that they had to reapply for their jobs they told everybody that they soon might be unemployed. I would expect that everybody has at least started to look at other positions. I would in fact advise everybody to look outside the organization.

As an interviewer I would never even ask the question:

  • if they said they would leave at the first opportunity, and I have to cut X percent of the positions; they will hurt their chances.
  • If they say, no I am not looking: It tells me nothing.

Thus I expect everybody to be looking, but nobody admitting they are looking.

Therefore If they ask you, say no I am not looking outside of the organization.

  • If they are not looking then they are either lazy or too comfortable. Unless they are really good I if there is anyone else comparable they are getting the nod over that guy. – IDrinkandIKnowThings May 28 '15 at 20:58
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No definitely not. There is no need to tell your current employer what your future plans are. Besides once you tell them that you plan to leave there is no incentive for them to retain (or in your case re-hire) you. So you may find yourself unemployed before you have an offer from a new employer. It is always easier to get a new job when you are already employed than when you are out of a job. A candidate who is employed is always more attractive to an interviewer than one who is not employed.

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This sounds like the time to interview for that "higher paying" senior program manager position, if it's been posted.

If you are applying for the same crappy job you already have, then I would flat out tell them, you are only doing this because it's part of the process. You have no intention of continuing without proper compensation and an improvement in work/life balance.

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