Job hopping is the latest buzzword jumping from the lips of both recruiters and managing directors alike. While previous generations have been motivated by the benefits of a ‘job for life’, the new millennial generation is clearly driven by different values and changing one’s job every few years is increasingly being considered the norm.
In the wake of this shift, life insurance firm LV has reported that a UK worker will now change employer every five years on average. But how accepting of job hopping have employers become and will job hopping damage your long-term career?
The primary concern of employers is that job hoppers cannot commit to an organisation or adapt to new environments and challenges. Those candidates most likely to be labelled job hoppers are those who have changed jobs four or more times in the last 10 years, according to a 2014 survey of 160 CFOs by Robert Half International. Employers have said that they would be discouraged by a candidate who had only spent two or three months in their last job, unless it was motivated by circumstances beyond their control.
However, an increasing number of employers are recognising the motivations behind job hopping and the qualities that job hoppers might bring to their business. For some, those who change jobs regularly demonstrate that they have a continuous learning approach and are consistently on the lookout for new challenges. For others, job hopping displays an open attitude and a desire to improve their existing skill set or sector experience.
Whatever reason you have for leaving a job, clearly outlining your motivations and supporting what you learnt in each role with evidence is vital to creating a sustainable CV. You may have changed jobs fairly frequently, but if you can prove what value you can bring to future employers then job hopping won’t damage your long-term career. Without this evidence, job hoppers can expect to be rejected by employers immediately. Experts suggest including even short two- or three-month jobs on your CV. Acknowledging what you have learnt about yourself from that role is better to have on your CV than a career gap.
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