So, let’s get this out of the way. A job hopper is a person who regularly switches from one position or company to the next.
In today’s working world, job hopping comes with the negative connotation of sabotaging oneself and it is assumed these people will have a difficult time climbing the corporate ladder. In reality, job hoppers are on the right track when it comes to increasing their salary and broadening their skill set while achieving overall job satisfaction.
Why is job hopping popping up so often? By 2020, estimates project that millennials will account for nearly 50% of the workforce. Today in corporate America millennials are the generation with the highest representation, and job hoppers are made up primarily of millennials. See the correlation?
According to Forbes, 91% of millennials surveyed plan to stay at their current job for less than 3 years. At that rate they would hold somewhere around 15 jobs before retirement! Nailing down the right job can be a hard thing to do, especially for recent college grads. Which is why the average length of time a millennial will stay at his or her job is 4.2 years. Unless they are changing the world, millennials grow restless and feel disconnected from their superiors, so staying in the same job and maintaining the same pay is one surefire way to lead to unhappiness and boredom.
In previous years, upon reviewing a job hopper’s resume, a potential employer would quickly eliminate someone from the candidate pool or proceed with extreme caution if they had held a fair share of gigs over their short career. Employers find themselves asking questions – Will this candidate be worth the time and money we plan to invest? Will they stick around long enough for our company to reap the benefits?
Luckily for today’s millennials, more and more companies are now focusing on candidates who have shifted around between jobs. They are eager to learn more about candidates’ different experiences and see what the applicants can bring to the table.
You may know, job searching and interviewing can be a long and grueling process. Some ultimately choose to stay with their current company out of convenience and to maintain job security. So, what exactly are the positives that come along with making the switch every few years? Salary, skills and satisfaction to name a few.
Based on a study completed by ADP, the largest salary increase comes after an employee has spent two years at a company. If workers are considering a change, then they should look to make the jump, as they are likely to collect a higher compensation from their next job. As those who have worked with a company for a few years have come to expect promotions and annual raises as the norm, switching jobs for millennials has become just as natural. Young millennials are more likely to see the biggest salary increase when they job hop, but that is based on the idea that entry-level employees start out lower in the salary pool. Employees are more likely to see a larger increase when they switch jobs a few times over the span of five years than they would if they were to stay put in the same amount of time.
As employers, it is important to modify your hiring practices and start focusing on the job hoppers. Companies are better off hiring these applicants, as many of the millennials who jump around tend to have unique skills, fresh ideas and are looking to take risks. These candidates likely process new information quickly which benefits your company when it comes to time and resources invested in training them. If an applicant has a hard time learning new things, it is not likely they will want to bounce around and put themselves through the struggle repeatedly.
Another positive aspect of job hopping includes expanding one’s skill set while learning infinite amounts of valuable information from each position they hold. Developing various skills throughout each step of their journey showcases one’s ability to adapt to new environments and situations, bringing them one step closer to their ideal role. Not only are you increasing your skill set, you are growing and diversifying your professional network as well. As many will learn throughout the job hunt, professional references are essential in closing the deal. Don’t burn bridges and prioritize finding ways to connect and maintain relationships with past and current co-workers. It is one way to ensure you are covered when the time comes to make a move.
As employers, looking for candidates who bring prior knowledge to the table is one way to continue making improvements to your company. If an applicant has previously worked within the same industry, they can provide valuable knowledge and new ideas. Even if the candidate is looking for a fresh start and decides to try a new field, their perspectives can often be adapted to your company’s benefit. Depending on the switch, there is a good chance a job hopper has completed similar tasks in previous positions and can likely provide insight such as what worked, what didn’t and offer suggestions for improving efficiency.
Based on all this information, it should come as no surprise that job hopping leads to an increased level of satisfaction for those who choose to make the leap. Increased opportunities for career advancement is just one reason many millennials find satisfaction in transitioning between jobs more frequently. In addition to opportunities for increased income and additional abilities, job hopping can provide a wider variety and a greater feeling of accomplishment for millennials.
Just because someone has moved around between multiple companies in a short amount of time, doesn’t automatically mean there is a time limit on how long they plan to stick with your company. If you consider reasons as to why more and more millennials are job hopping, a main thought might be that they just haven’t found the right fit yet – perhaps your company could be the fit they are searching for. During the interview process, it is important to gain a better understanding of what has led the job hopper to move around – their answer just might surprise you. Job hoppers typically possess a strong sense of enthusiasm and if you can provide the right opportunities, you might end up with an employee who is able to grow with your company.
So how will you decide to launch your next search for the right candidates? Are you ready to take a risk on the millennial job hopper? Stay tuned for my next blog which will explore whether employers are doing everything possible to retain their young talent and prevent the increasing job hop.