Understand job hopping: drawbacks and how to explain job hopping

Karen Titcomb our consultant managing the role

It is estimated that most people will have 12 jobs during their lives. However, in the last year, over 22% of workers ages 20 and older spent a year or less at their jobs.

Professionals are now challenging traditional notions of loyalty and career progression. 

If you are one of these professionals, it is important to understand job hopping and the challenges and opportunities it presents when navigating your career, especially if you are considering switching jobs. 

What is job hopping?

Job hopping refers to individuals changing jobs frequently in a short period of time. This new trend holds a stark contrast to where professionals would spend their careers with a single employer or at least a very long tenure. 

Why do people job-hop?

Increase in salary 

According to a survey by Glassdoor, job hoppers experience an average salary increase of 10 – 20% compared to those who stayed in the same role over a long period. These higher salaries are incentives for people to consider other opportunities. 

Professional development 

However, monetary gain is not the only reason why a career-development-minded professional would seek to change jobs. A new role or company can provide greater career development opportunities, opportunities to advance your skill set, as well as offering quicker progression into a senior position. 

Work-life balance 

Some individuals seek job changes to achieve a better work-life balance, aiming for roles with flexible hours, remote work options, or reduced stress levels. 85% of employees believe the work environment affects their mood and productivity.

Company Culture and Fit 

Job hoppers may look for environments that align better with their values, work styles, or cultural preferences, seeking a better fit with their personal or professional aspirations.

Drawbacks you should consider

Those in the financial business should be cautious not to move too frequently, however. Loyalty is an increasingly important trait and a CV filled with roles occupied for less than 18 months is certain to raise eyebrows. 

Many employers in this sector make significant contributions to staff development and remunerate generously – which means while they are happy to invest in you, they will actively seek commitment from a potential employee to deem it a worthwhile exchange. 

Furthermore, those who job hop frequently risk coming across as opportunistic but also as rigid employees who find it hard to adapt to working culture and successfully integrate into a workforce. 

Finance professionals should, of course, seek to take advantage of the benefits that changing jobs can bring. However, proceed with caution – too many moves and the offers may start to dry up!

How to explain job hopping 

Hiring managers may see multiple jobs on your CV as a red flag so explaining this in a professional setting requires tact and transparency to present your career transitions positively. 

  • Emphasise how each job change contributed to your professional growth and skill development
  • Never speak badly about your previous employers
  • Highlight how your diverse experiences bring added value to the prospective role or company
  • Show your commitment to finding the right fit and explain how you're now seeking a long-term opportunity where you can contribute and grow professionally

Find your perfect role with Marks Sattin

With our extensive industry expertise and a deep understanding of the evolving job market, we are dedicated to helping professionals like you explore new opportunities that align with your aspirations and career goals. 

Our tailored support doesn't just stop at finding your next role; it extends to providing invaluable insights, personalised advice, and expert guidance every step of the way.

If you’re weighing up your career options or are ready to jump ship, think Marks Sattin and look for your next lasting role here or explore our career advice hub

04/12/23
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