What Is Job Hopping? The Pros and Cons

Can switching companies and job hopping really hurt your career?

Job hopping is considered to be a big no from employers. Such candidates are rejected way too early in the recruitment process. Employers consider them too unstable or inexperienced to hire. But this thinking hasn’t dimmed down the trend at all! Instead, we’re seeing quite a significant rise in job hoppers. And most of them are Millennials. Especially since the pandemic and the ensuing Great Resignation, workers have been on the lookout for a company they see fit for themselves. And they aren’t afraid to move between jobs until they find it.

What is Job Hopping?

Job hopping is a controversial strategy for building your career quickly. It’s the practice of holding multiple jobs in a short span of time. Most job holders spend as little as a year at a company, and at most two years. They then move on to another.

There are a lot of reasons why one might switch between so many jobs in a few years. Some might be dissatisfied with their current work or their future path. So they shift to another role. They keep switching until they find a company or a career path that works best for them. 

Other job hoppers do it to build their resume. Education and experience can only get you so far. Talent recruiters value skills the most. But you can’t build a portfolio of skills if you’re stuck in the same job forever. So job hoppers set out to find jobs that will add relevant skills to their resume. 

Going down this path can have a significant effect on your career. So it’s important to look at the pros and cons of job hopping first. Take a look!

Advantages


Job hopping can bring a lot of benefits to your career. Here are some:

Increased Salary

A study by the ADP Research Institute has shown that workers switching jobs get an average pay increase of about 5.3%. Workers who stay at their jobs get around a 4% wage increase. Job hopping is a very effective way to achieve a higher salary. A higher pay is part of the contract when you start a new job. This is why many workers tend to switch jobs or roles, instead of waiting for an annual raise. But money isn’t the only reason you should be changing jobs!

Career Growth

We mentioned skills some time back. Well, here it is! Looking for an effective way to learn multiple skills and use them to advance your career? Job hopping is your answer. When you switch your job, you’re taking skills from your previous role on to the next. When you hop again, you have another set of skills to take with you. The cycle continues until you’ve built the perfect portfolio. Now, you’re the perfect candidate for a high-level role in your industry. You’ll have diverse skills, experiences and results. So you can aim for a high-paying managerial job. Or even for an executive position!

Adaptability

A significant advantage job hoppers have over other workers is that they’re adaptable. They’ve worked in multiple companies with all kinds of people and on a range of projects. Hence, they have experience with every kind of situation. Job hoppers are much more adaptable than normal employees. They adjust easily to a new environment. They know how to connect and form relationships with their new teams. This is a major soft skill that is highly valuable in every organization.

Disadvantages

Loss of Employee Benefits

You’re changing jobs after every year or two. This means you’ll never fully be able to enjoy your fringe benefits. You won’t get as much vacation time. You’ll have to switch doctors and insurance plans more frequently as well. In severe cases, you’ll also lose some of your retirement income if the time for vesting hasn’t passed. This means you’ll lose all the employer contributions to your retirement fund. Job hoppers often have to sacrifice their fringe benefits for better career growth. 

The Red Flag

Even though the business world has advanced so much, there’s still a stigma around job hopping. Recruiters don’t want a worker who’ll leave them in a year or two. The cost of hiring, onboarding and training a new employee is too much. So why bring in someone who’s just going to leave again? Job hoppers face a lot of difficulties finding employment. 

But there is a silver lining in all this. The pandemic and its ensuing effects wreaked havoc in the business world. So many people lost their jobs or quit because of significant reasons. So if you job hopped during the pandemic, recruiters are likely to understand your situation and not judge you on it. 

Can It Hurt My Career?

The short answer is; Yes. You can significantly hurt your career by job hopping. Some recruiters do like candidates with a wide range of experiences under their belt. But most don’t. It shows that you don’t have loyalty and you’ll leave them after a short while too. You don’t want recruiters to think that way about you. Too much job hopping is a big stain on your career anywhere in the world. 

Five jobs in ten years? Acceptable. Ten jobs in ten years? That’s a big NO! If you switch jobs too much, there’s a good chance nobody will want you when you do decide to settle down. So, it’s better to job hop moderately and in the right way. 

Don’t worry! We’ll teach you how!

How to Do It Right?

We’ve been talking about the wrong way to job hop till now. So what’s the right way to do so?

The best way is to job hop with intention. When you’re looking for your next job, you need to be highly critical of your options. Is the new role the right move for your career? Your next job should build upon your previous one. Don’t simply move for money or perks. Consider how your former position and the new one look on your resume. Do they complement? 

You also need to know how to better present job hopping on your resume and in your interviews. Prepare logical reasons for why you left each job. Instead of badmouthing your employer, talk about how an opportunity opened up that you just couldn’t miss. Your reasoning should put the recruiter’s mind at ease. 

Lastly, restructure your resume. A chronological timeline of your career is a rookie move here. It will only give recruiters more doubt and questions to ask. Instead, structure your resume in a way that highlights the skills and qualifications that you’ve gained from each job. 

Are You a Job Hopper?

Job hopping may sound like a very easy strategy to some. But they couldn’t be more wrong. It requires patience, grit and a lot of critical decisions that can make or break your career. It isn’t just for anyone. 

So, are you a job hopper? How are you going about it? Let’s talk in the comments below!


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