All posts in: Career Advice

Back of moving truck filled with boxes for relocation.

You’ve just been offered an amazing career opportunity, but it requires a move – now what?

For most, relocation can be a challenging and stressful experience due to the amount of time and resources it takes to undergo such a big change. Packing and unpacking, scheduling moving services, booking flights, breaking leases, buying and selling property, and family situations are just a handful of common hurdles that can be faced during the process. However, all the work and effort it takes to relocate can lead to a brighter future for your personal and professional life.

According to our 18th Annual Casino Executive Satisfaction Survey, 82% of respondents are willing to relocate for the right job opportunity. With so many open to moving, it is important to understand the decision-making and negotiating process for relocation to be as pain free as possible. We asked our executive recruiters to provide their input when it comes to executives relocating for a new job.

 Factors to Consider when Relocating 

  • Family – If you have family members that will accompany you in the relocation process, it is essential to keep in mind how the change in environment will affect them. Will your family be able to adjust well in the new area? Is your spouse willing to leave their current job? Does the location provide quality education if you have children? Alternatively, would they potentially not join you in the move? Continue to keep an open dialogue with your family to ensure a smoother process.
  • Cost of Living – Research the difference in cost of living in your current location versus the potential location. If the daily cost of living is higher, ensure you will be sufficiently covered with your new benefits package and yearly salary. Evaluate whether the compensation will realistically allow you to sustain your current lifestyle. If your cost of living will reduce and the compensation is much lower in the area, make sure that the new salary still equates to an increase.
  • Company Culture – Going into a completely new work environment without fully understanding the company culture can be risky. There is a lot of work that comes into relocating, so it is crucial to learn as much information through your own research and the interview process to decide whether the company will be a good fit for you. This is obviously important for a move to a new company, but the importance intensifies when it also involves uprooting and moving.
  • Convenience – Consider the place you want to live and how far the drive will be for your work commute, distance to grocery stores and restaurants, schools, etc. How accessible is the public transportation if you prefer that to a personal vehicle?
  • Timing – Think through the potential timing of the relocation. When should you inform your current employer of your leaving in order to plan and execute the move in time?
  • Weather & Personal Lifestyle – Be prepared for any change in weather at the new location. Keep in mind your personal lifestyle and any hobbies that could be affected and if you are willing to make adjustments.

How to Negotiate the Relocation Package

Most of the time, companies offer a relocation package if you need to move for them, but keep in mind that this is not always the case.

If the cost of living is higher in the new area, real estate needs are one impactful area to carefully think through and bring up during negotiations.  It can get tricky with different markets and figuring out what to do with current property. In rare cases, employers will offer relocation packages that offer bridge loans.

Relocation packages typically cover the moving of household goods, temporary housing and a couple of “to and from” trips to finalize the relocation. Relocation assistance is either reimbursed upon the submission of receipts or a lump sum check is cut upfront to cover the entire cost, similar to that of a sign-on bonus. The amount of relocation assistance, number of days of temporary housing and number of return trips can be negotiable.

Another potential factor is asking the ability to bring your spouse to a real estate visitation pre or post offer at the company’s expense. Allowing your spouse to garner maximum information about the local community, neighborhoods, and school systems can be a way to decipher together whether relocation can be a good fit.

Most companies will bend where needed to make the new hire’s transition easier. However, it can have a negative impact if you make too large of a request in any one area. Be thoughtful of what you would need to transition with the least difficulty possible, and be reasonable. Companies want transitions to be smooth, while having their new executives up and running quickly with as little distractions and complications as possible.

Relocation Resource Links

We put together a list of helpful links to start your relocation research.

Cost of Living Comparisons*

*Note: For best results, use more than one calculator for comparison. Keep in mind that cities that are near each other can have quite different costs of living.  Also, calculators do not always make a distinction between buying and renting, and this can significantly change the overall comparison.

State by State Taxes

Profiles of U.S. Cities

Information on Real Estate

Home Affordability Calculator

Cost of Moving

Protecting Your Move

While relocation can seem intimidating, preparing, doing your research and having open communication with your potential employer will lead to a smooth and exciting process.

Bristol Associates, Inc. is an executive search firm with over 50 years of excellence in recruiting nationwide. Bristol specializes in recruiting for companies in the casino gaming, food manufacturing, hospital & healthcare, hotels & resorts, travel, tourism & attractions, facilities & concessions, nonprofit, and restaurant businesses.

If you’re interested in working with Bristol Associates, click here if you’re an employer or here if you’re a job seeker.

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[Image] Magnifying glass hovering over candidate resumes (What Do Employers Look For in Executive Candidates?)

Experience isn’t the only aspect that employers look for when it comes to hiring. Having worked with clients for over 50 years, Bristol understands the complex wants and needs of employers searching to fill a role at their company. It takes the right mix of experience, skill, personality, and fit within company culture for a candidate to land an executive position. Our seasoned recruiters share their insight regarding what employers commonly look for when searching for executive candidates.

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[Image] People in internal interview process

When a position opens within a company, most organizations consider the option of extending the application to internal and external applicants. The internal interview may appear to be a smooth and easy process for employees who already work for the company, but it still requires the same amount of time and effort as an external interview to succeed.

Tip #1: Act Like an External Applicant

As an existing team member, be prepared to submit an updated resume when applying for the open position. It’s important to respect the internal process as one would for an external process by researching the position, dressing in appropriate interview attire, and preparing for the interview.

Even though you may know the interviewers in the panel, being too lax during the interview may come off as arrogant. Keep in mind that even though you may think you are the most qualified for the position, other internal or external candidates may prove to be a better fit for the role. Not taking the process seriously may decrease the likelihood of attaining the job.

>>> Read: Oops! Common Interview Mistakes Candidates Make

Tip #2: Use Your Knowledge to Your Advantage

Unlike external candidates, internal candidates have the advantage of having an inside perspective by already working for the company. It’s important to refresh your basic knowledge about the company while tying in what you have learned from your first-hand experience working for the organization.

If there are any changes that can be made within the company that can lead to the growth and success of the organization, be sure to address it in a constructive way, using solid examples from work experience. Showing proactivity in consistently improving the company can be a positive way to stand out from the other applicants.

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On October 10, 2018, Bristol’s President Benjamin Farber moderated the Global Gaming Expo (G2E) panel, Taking Charge of Your Career to Achieve Your Preferred Future. Joining Ben on the panel were Bellagio’s Human Resources Director Brenda Dysinger and Affinity Gaming’s Director of Human Resources Greg Kite. The three executives discussed two major areas of development to provide professionals with the necessary tools to prepare for their future: Effective Networking and Nailing the Interview Process.

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Letter of Recommendation [Image]

A strong letter of recommendation can distinguish a candidate’s application from the rest. Taking the time to obtain a letter of recommendation will leave a positive impact with the employer or recruiter reviewing the application. On the other hand, writing a letter of recommendation is a great way to pay it forward and contribute to the success of the candidate’s career.

Whether you are the candidate requesting the letter, or the employer responsible for writing the recommendation, it is essential to understand how to write a letter of recommendation that will leave a lasting impression.

What makes a compelling letter of recommendation?

Here are some helpful guidelines to write a strong letter of recommendation:

  • Print the letter on company letterhead
  • Personalization and sincerity is key – avoid using letter of recommendation templates
  • Explain the professional relationship and the duration spent working with the candidate
  • Give specific examples of the value and impact that the candidate has made in the company
  • Highlight the candidate’s hard and soft skills that greatly benefitted the company
  • When signing off the letter, include a handwritten signature along with the employer’s typed name, job title, and contact information
  • Proofread to avoid typos or grammatical errors

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Candidates can get anxious when they have to wait for the status of a job that they really want. As ideal as it would be to receive an immediate response from the recruiter or hiring manager, it is not always feasible, and response time may depend on the amount of applicants applying for a given opportunity. However, keeping in mind simple follow-up tactics can benefit the candidate in the end – as long as it is done tactfully.

Things that make you go hmmm…

Before deciding to follow up on a position, it is important to keep in mind possible reasons as to why feedback has not been received. Here are a few reasons to consider:

• The recruiter or hiring manager has not received feedback from their client or hiring authority, thus they have nothing to share.

• The recruiter or hiring manager may currently be out of the office on business travel or vacation. Even in this day and age of technology, it is not always easy to respond in a timely manner. We still believe in being present when meeting with others, driving, etc.

• No news is rarely good news. If you have not been asked to schedule an interview in over a month, chances are the position has been filled or the search is no longer a priority.

We asked President, Ben Farber to share a few of his favorite tips on how to follow up effectively when seeking a status update.

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A job interview is a two-way street – it’s a conversation that helps assess if the candidate is the right fit for the employer and vice versa. However, if the candidate has a poor interview, it can ruin their chance of receiving the job offer. By recognizing and avoiding potential interview mistakes, candidates can prevent themselves from giving a negative impression on the employer.

Our executive recruiters share interview mistakes that candidates have made and ways to prevent them from happening in the first place.

Interview Mistake #1: No Preparation

Insufficient preparation can make the candidate look unprofessional and will be evident to their potential employer through their lack of serious, pertinent questions and answers regarding the job and the organization.

The candidate should research the company and the position thoroughly before an interview. That way, they can come to the interview armed with information that will enable them to sound well-informed.

Read More: How to Answer Difficult Interview Questions

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businessman with question marks over head thinking about executive recruitment questions
For potential candidates unfamiliar with the executive recruitment process, it’s common to have questions before feeling comfortable submitting a resume or participating in the hiring process of a career opportunity. At Bristol Associates, our executive recruiters do their best to give helpful and candid guidance that is beneficial to both the candidates and clients of our business.

We asked three of our recruiters to give their insight on commonly asked questions they received while working with candidates during the executive recruitment process.

Q: Can I call you to discuss the position I saw advertised on your website?

David Alford, Director

A: As recruiters, we are on the phone much of the day. To save us time and not waste your time, we like to get your resume prior to scheduling a conversation to ensure that the position you saw advertised is a good fit for both you and our client. Click here to submit your resume through our website.


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Taking the time to set professional goals is crucial when striving to have a productive and effective year in the workplace. Establishing realistic deadlines is great, but also understanding your resources to help achieve your goals can put you at an advantage.

Bristol’s Executive Recruiters shares their recommended goals for job seekers and employers to kick off 2018.

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Based on their client’s needs and preferences, executive recruiters use LinkedIn as a key source to find their client’s ideal candidate. As a LinkedIn user who is actively job seeking, it’s important to understand the features that LinkedIn provides while delivering your profile to an extensive audience.

The challenge of a successful LinkedIn profile is a mix of showcasing one’s skillsets and conveying one’s unique personality in a way that leaves a lasting impression.  Bristol Associates asked Kristina Paudler, Director of Recruitment in Healthcare, for key points she looks for when browsing LinkedIn profiles.

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