Considering taking on part-time work in addition to your full-time job? You’re not alone. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in January more than 3.3 million people who worked full time also held an additional part-time job.
But moonlighting can be taxing — both mentally and physically. And juggling the extra work load could put your career at risk. So before looking in the want-ads, be sure to be prepared.
First, read your employee handbook and check with your employer. Some companies frown upon moonlighting, especially if the part-time position is for a competitor or in the same industry.
To secure for part-time work, “network with colleagues through professional and trade associations,” says certified career and workforce development consultant Anita Davis-DeFoe, president of the Afia Planning and Development Corp.
Tawana CB Wood, owner of resume-writing firm TCB Solutions, a resume-writing firm, agrees.
“Most employers prefer to hire someone through a referral, especially now, when employers are seeing ten times more resumes and applications than they did in the past,” adds Wood, who also suggests using online job searches. “Harness the power of the Internet, and definitely let your (social) networks know you are looking for a part-time opportunity.”
Experts say you should never to job hunt while you are at work. “You do not want to jeopardize your primary source of income for extra cash,” says Wood. Look for a second job near your current place of employment to among increased commuting time.
If your industry is tightening its belt or your employer forbids part-time work in your present field, use a part-time job opportunity to learn about a new industry. This will also make you more valuable in today’s competitive marketplace.
Do some research on various industries to see which are growing. Also, check out companies who have slashed their workforce. They may be hiring part timers or outside consultants.
“Full-time professionals should conduct ongoing environment scanning, mentally evaluating the state of the organization development the field to expertise. Look to deficiencies gaps in problematic, tactual, or operational capacities. These gaps can offer potential moonlighting or entrepreneurial opportunities,” says Davis-DeFoe.
“Many companies are looking to outsource functions such as accounting, administrative assistance, research, website design, medical billing, etc.,” Wood says. A great source to find consulting jobs is Elance.com.
Once you’ve found the perfect second job, organize, organize, organize. Leave a two-hour span between jobs, if possible, just in case you have to work late at your full-time job. ” Time management will be critical as you seek to manage multiple deadlines in addition to family, church or other commitments,” says Davis-DeFoe. Don’t overcommit or overschedule.
Schedule personal time for yourself, even if it’s just one night a week, and be sure to continue your fitness regime, experts say. The added stress combined with less sleep could lead to an unhealthy body. Make room for family and friends so not to neglect important relationships. Make sure you’re off at least one night and one full day each week.
Always keep your full-time job a