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Posted by chris on March 25, 2016

Job Hoppers

I’m quite disturbed by the new trend that seems to encourage Gen Y’s (The Millenials) that job hopping is okay.

I’ve seen articles about how it’s the norm these days for someone at the age of 30 to have had a dozen jobs ore more.  I’ve read that recruiters that ignore these candidates must get ready to lose out on their fees, because this is the new norm, and there’s nothing wrong with it and nothing we can do about it.


Whilst I realize that when you’re younger you’re still trying to establish your passion, what you’re good at and what you enjoy being good at, what company culture you fit best into…. that you might move around a little until you’ve found your niche.  So it’s not unusual for youngsters to job-hop a little over the first 3 years of their careers, and that’s understandable. You spend more time at the office than you do with your friends and family, so it’s important to feel happy and fulfilled in your career.  If you are miserable, then please move on.

But having been in this industry for many years, I can pretty much assure you that recruiters get hugely turned off by a 30 year old who has never stuck a job out for more than a year.  And I can pretty much assure that all our clients feel the same way.

Here’s what we think when we come across such a CV 

You were fired on numerous occasions.

You’re useless at what you do, and got out before you were fired.

You have poor interpersonal skills and couldn’t get on with your team.

You are flakey, have no staying power, and have commitment issues.  

You are greedy, always looking out for the next best thing, and use your employers as a stepping stone.

If we submit you to our client, you’ll do the same thing to us and our client.  We’ll probably have to pay back your fee.

You are high risk.

If this was a relationship with your lover, and you were deciding whether or not to become exclusive, would the above attract you to him / her?  Gosh I hope not. Well it’s the same with employers, who are making a big commitment and investment in you (in both time and money).

You are never going to hit the ground running on your first day, there is almost always a ramp up period, which involves someone else being taken away from his or her own job to train you.  Often, it takes 6 months before your employer can start reaping the reward of his /her investment.  How very frustrating to have invested so much in you, only for you to leave just as you’re at the place they needed you to be, and they have to start all over with someone else.

One of the most important measures in securing a new job is the ability to draw on outstanding references from previous employees. If you work at a company and leave just before they are about to see their return on investment, it’s not likely than that employee is going to sing your praises.  You might get a good reference, but it won’t be outstanding.  It’s also quite hard to really establish what you’re amazing at for such a short period of employment.  And then of course, let’s just hope they even remember you after being on their team so such a short period.

When you sign a contract I realize that you are not committed to that employer for life.  But it is a huge commitment and not something to be taken lightly.  Be sure that you’re serious about the company, that you feel you fit into their culture, that you’re excited by the opportunity, and that you can learn and grow in the position.  If not, keep looking.

I’m not encouraging you to join a company and remain there for life. I would even discourage you from being at the same company for 15 years.  Learning new industries, new cultures, systems and products and being exposed to different management styles – that’s a good thing. However, if I look at a CV and you’ve had 12 jobs in 10 years – I can assure you I won’t be calling you in for an interview, and my client wouldn’t want to see your CV anyway.

So take a lot of time in making the career choices and be sure you're signing an offer for all the right reasons. 



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