Conventional wisdom states that employers consider frequent job changes on the part of a prospective employee to be negative. Job hopping supposedly indicates that a person lacks reliability or loyalty to his employer. However, opinions are increasingly beginning to change on this subject, with hiring managers holding a more open mind when they see frequent job changes on an applicant's resume. In fact, frequent job changes might even be good for your career. Here's why.
Willingness to Take Risks
Just because an employee stays in the same job forever doesn't mean that he's happy at work or throwing himself into the job with full gusto. Many people stick with their jobs out of fear of the unknown. A person who changes jobs often demonstrates a willingness to take risks and try new things, qualities that can be extremely attractive and valuable to an employer, especially in creative, entrepreneurial or marketing fields.
Smart Response to a Weak Economy
While the economy is in recovery mode as of 2015, many years of recession have made it hard for some smaller companies in particular to stay afloat. Those who stayed with their sinking ships often ended underemployed or simply out of work as their employers closed their doors for good. Job applicants who show frequent job changes on their resumes may have been the smart ones, recognizing the negative warning signs at their companies and jumping ship in time to save themselves. Employers may want to recognize and reward the quick thinking of such applicants.
Additional Skills and Achievements
An employee with a history of frequent job changes may have picked up far more in the way of additional skills and experience than a person who has stayed in the same spot handling exactly the same responsibilities for many years. An employee with greater skills and experience is clearly of more value to an employer. If your resume makes you look like you've been job hopping, make sure your cover letter deals with any questions an employer may raise by pointing out how you have grown and become more skilled through the variety of positions in which you've worked.
In today's rapidly changing marketplace, the ability to go with the flow and change strategies on the fly can be a greatly valued attribute in an employee. Those who've undergone frequent job changes are supremely adaptable, having had to adjust to the different company cultures, processes and procedures with each change of position.
If you've gone through frequent job changes, step back from your resume to think about what you've learned through your experiences. Find ways in which your varied job experience can be seen as an asset by a prospective employer, and don't be shy about pointing out the value of your experience. As employers continue to change their attitudes regarding frequent job changes, you should find others appreciating what you bring to your new position.
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