There is an awkward moment between when you're considering leaving your job and when you actually do. It's a vulnerable time, a period of questioning and reflecting on who you are and what you truly want.
It's also a time when it'd be really nice to see what's out there and get attention from recruiters ... without alerting your boss.
LinkedIn, as it turns out, makes it easy to do this. The feature is called Open Candidate, and it does just what it sounds like: it lets recruiters know you're looking, while keeping that information private from your company.
When you select the option of Open Candidate, you input some specifics about what type of job you're looking for, and in which location. You can even write a short note to recruiters.
LinkedIn then does its best to keep this information from being shown to recruiters at your company or those affiliated with it. As LinkedIn's VP of Talent Solutions and Careers Daniel Shapero says, "It's really a way for a person to signal to the recruiting community that they're on the market and share a few things about what would be compelling to them."
He also acknowledges that nothing is perfect and LinkedIn can't guarantee that you won't be seen in your desiring-a-new-job state (after all, we're still talking about the internet). But the chances drop dramatically.
Just make sure that before you begin the process, you update your current company so that it's accurate. If not, LinkedIn will be hiding the information from the wrong people.
To take the feature for a test drive, open your account and click the Jobs tab at the top. Just below "Jobs you may be interested in," click "Update career interests." You'll see a slider at the top that says, "Let recruiters know you're open." (Note that you can only access Open Candidate on desktop for now. It doesn't work from the LinkedIn app.)
Testing of the feature has been shown to be successful thus far: Those who've used Open Candidate are more likely to be contacted by recruiters, and the interest is mutual -- recruiters themselves are more likely to get responses from Open Candidates.
That just goes to show how motivating being in the wrong job can be.
Happy hunting, everyone.