Moving to a new city for a job can be simultaneously exciting and stressful. Set the stage for a smooth transition by reaching out and establishing some contacts before you arrive with these relocation tips for how to network in a new city.
Of all the relocation tips on this list, this is the easiest to follow. Social media is a must-have tool for anyone conducting a long-distance job search or determining how to build a professional network remotely. Seek out current experts in the field living at your destination, research what others in your industry are saying about working for different companies, and reach out to ask any questions you might have.
If possible, take some time to travel to job fairs, workshops, or other professional development events in the area you plan to settle. Face-to-face interaction is a highly effective method for how to build a professional network. Plus, your willingness to travel to that area just to meet with others in your industry makes it clear that you are excited to be moving to a new city for a job and demonstrates an eagerness to jump right in!
One answer to how to network in a new city may be as simple as getting back in touch with old friends and bosses. Review old contacts and see whether any of them are currently living near your destination. If so, give them a call or send a quick email! Even if they don’t presently work in your field, they may know someone who does.
When networking in a new city, it will take time to build the perfect set of contacts. Don’t limit your focus to people who work in the precise industry, field, and location where you plan to move. Instead, you should do your best to simply get to know as many people as possible.
Try to create relationships with those who have occasional contact with professionals in your industry and those who work in neighboring cities and districts, and even across the state. Take advantage of any local resources available to help new residents seeking strategies for how to build a social network in a new city, even though these may not be specifically geared toward professional networking. You never know where you might find a job referral!
Are you currently volunteering at a food bank? Do you coach Little League? If you work with an organization in your free time now, research similar groups in your destination city. When you find one you like, give them a call! Service work is a great strategy for integrating into the community, whether you’re looking for how to build a social network in a new city or just a way to get to familiarize yourself with the area’s culture.
Another helpful piece of advice for networking in a new city is to check in with your high school or university alumni association, or reach out to any professional organizations you are a member of. HR representatives will sometimes use their own alma maters or memberships to curate a list of candidate names, as they have experience with the educational standards of these programs. Even if these networks don’t know of anyone who’s currently hiring, they may be able to put you in touch with someone living in the area who works in your industry.
Starting over in a new city may seem daunting at first, but you can put yourself on the path to success with the relocation tips above. Need more advice on how to build a professional network? Take a look at our library of networking career advice!