The question: how do I restart my high-level career?
After many years working overseas as a global IT director, I took a drastic cut in pay to work at a small local company so that I could be with my wife when she was ill.
She is now in full remission, and I am anxious to get back to a senior role and improve my salary. I am finding that when I apply for senior posts, the recruiter takes one look at my current salary and rejects me out of hand.
The solution: approach companies directly for posts
If you feel you are being rejected by consultants on the basis of your salary, do not discuss it with them. If you do, make it clear that you took a substantial pay cut and state what your previous salary was.
It should be apparent to anyone reading your CV that you are used to large IT environments and big budgets. It should also be apparent that you have the skills and drive to be in a similar role now.
Bear in mind that you have a good work/life balance and that being local to your wife has in no small part aided her recovery. Some firms may be cautious about the amount of time you would need to commit for a big role. Work out what you are looking to do time and travel wise and stick to it.
If you approach companies directly, you will secure interviews very quickly. This is a candidate-driven market and any employer can see that they potentially would get a strong candidate at slightly under market rate but at a considerably better salary than you are currently on. That is a win-win for everyone.
Solution by Tracey Abbott, business manager at Wreay Group and Atsco board member
The panel: Computer People, Hudson, No Limits Coaching, The Training Camp, Wreay Group
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This was first published in December 2006