If you’re looking for work then you need to make a good impression with recruiters and/or hiring managers to maximise your chances of securing a great job. However, sometimes your CV presents areas of concern to a recruiter.
When a recruiter reviews a CV that shows a history of “job hopping,” this often raises questions about a candidate’s suitability for a position.
If your CV has frequent job changes, recruiters will be trying to establish your:
Are you a candidate who will be committed to staying with a company long-term? Employers generally want to invest in employees who are likely to stay with the company for a reasonable amount of time. A pattern of frequent job changes indicates a higher likelihood that you will leave after a short period.
Which is not to say that staying at one company for really long stretches is necessarily viewed more favourably. For instance, if you’ve spent 15 years at the same organisation with very little career progression, then this may signal to a recruiter that you’re not prepared to challenge yourself.
Are you adaptable to company culture? Or do you have difficulty building long-term working relationships with colleagues? You’ll need to reassure those hiring that you would be a good cultural fit for their company. Do your research and ask questions so you are across the company values and culture.
Reasons for leaving
Recruiters will scrutinise your reasons provided for leaving each position. If there are valid and understandable reasons like layoffs, company closures, or personal circumstances, it may mitigate some of the negative perceptions.
If you’ve moved around a lot but haven’t shown significant career advancement or growth, it suggests a lack of ambition or an inability to maintain steady career development. It’s helpful to highlight the diversity of skills you‘ve acquired from the various roles you’ve had.
On the positive side, recruiters may see job hopping as a sign of adaptability and the ability to work in different environments. It could suggest you’re comfortable taking on new challenges and quick at getting up to speed in new roles.
What to do
If you’re a job seeker with multiple job changes over short frames of time, you must be prepared to address these concerns during interviews or in your cover letter. Being honest and proactive about explaining the reasons for the job changes can help alleviate some of the potential concerns recruiters and the company hiring you may have. Having good references and recommendations will also help recruiters to get a better understanding of your work ethic, suitability and skills.