What Are Job Hoppers and How Can You Identify Them

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Just like rabbits jumping from one place to the next, one of the latest trends among young workers is job hopping. It consists of spending a couple of years at a certain job, acquiring as much knowledge as possible and refining one’s skills, before moving on to the next opportunity.

To someone that is used to the traditional way of thinking, job hopping may sound ludicrous. Perhaps it’s a generational thing; after all, the median length a baby boomer stays at their job is over 10 years, as opposed to the 3-year average that a worker under 34 spends at a single company.

What Defines a Job Hopper?

At first glance, a job hopper may seem like a recruiter’s nightmare; they’ll make you go through all the trouble of hiring them just to leave you a couple of years later. However, that’s not necessarily a bad thing.

It is important to understand the motivations behind a job hopper’s actions. When they decide to leave one company for the next , they rarely do it for money, it is mostly the desire to grow that moves them . Also, a job hopper probably won’t just quit on you without warning, because they also value networking and maintaining bridges with their colleagues.

The main purpose behind job hopping is to hone and refine one’s skills by facing various challenges in different companies and organizations. So, one of the defining traits of a job hopper is adaptability. The onboarding process can be somewhat troublesome and slow for a new worker, but for someone that has been around different workplaces in recent years it will go a lot smoother.

Furthermore, an experienced job hopper can become a great asset to many companies. We’re talking about people that have been around and have seen how things are done in different environments, which means they probably learned some of the best practices of their field; and that is always something valuable to bring to your existing workforce.

Where Can You Find a Job Hopper?

Not every industry is the same and not all of them are quite suitable for job hoppers. Due to their nature, some sectors are more tolerant towards this trend than others. It’s quite probable that there will always be some types of careers where jumping around will never be beneficial.

Areas that are less likely to see workers hoping from one company to another include energy, industrial manufacturing, air and maritime transportation, law, scientific research and development, and medicine. Most of these sectors require long-term education or training, or rather serve to fill a very specific niche where competition between companies is not as fierce.

On the other hand, some of the most common places you can expect to find job hoppers include companies specialized in IT, web development, media, entertainment, education, non-profits, and other professional services.

How Can You Tell a Job Hopper and a Bad Worker Apart?

A very common stigma faced by many job hoppers is being considered bad employees by recruiters, who are used to the traditional idea of retaining a job for as long as possible.

As we said before, a job hopper can actually be very beneficial to a company. However, there will always be some workers that are actually no good and can’t retain a job; these are the candidates you ought to avoid.

But how can you tell the difference? There are some key elements to look for in a candidate’s résumé that will actually help you identify people that are really capable of bringing something positive to your company and those that aren’t.

You’ll know that you’re dealing with a good job hopper when you see that they are open with their previous job experiences. They will be the ones providing lots of references and people you can contact and that can back their previous achievements. Look for candidates that stayed an average of two to three years in their previous workplaces, and most importantly, those who left voluntarily.

Final Answers

Job hopping may sound like something a crazy person would do if you’re only used to the traditional scheme of things. However, it is a trend that will only keep growing in popularity due to the many perks it offers to workers. But that doesn’t mean that recruiters can’t also benefit from it.