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Is Job Hopping Acceptable?

Four orange space hoppers lined up in front of goal post.

Nicole Doughton Job Searching

It is not uncommon to change jobs. There can be many situations which will tempt you into job hunting. You might be unhappy in your role, relocation, redundancy, change of circumstances etc. However, should you avoid regularly job hoping throughout your career?

Take this example:
You were working for a business for a number of years. You choose to leave and join another company in order to progress your career prospects. The company you decide to join boasted better career opportunities, an impressive training programme, industry links and a better salary.

A few weeks into your new role the cracks start to show and you wonder if you made the right decision.

You decide to stay on a few more weeks to see if things change and to give the role the benefit of the doubt. No changes there. Desperate to leave, you start looking for a new role. Will the fact that you have only been at the company a couple of months put new companies off employing you?

Will Employers judge you on this decision?
Probably, but stay with me.

The rule of thumb is; try and stay over 2 years. If you job hop too frequently, companies may worry how long you will stay around. Loyalty is a very underrated quality in a worker. It shows that someone can grow with teams, settle into their role and adapt to the changes within the business. It also indicates that they were well liked by their employer.

Having said this, it will not benefit you or your employer if you stay in a job you are not happy in. By gritting your teeth in a role you are not comfortable in, you could damage your reputation. A worker that is not settled or fulfilled will show signs in their work and attitude. If you must leave, there are options for a successful career.

Being successful when job hopping:

Small goldfish jumping from a small bowl into a bigger bowl

Honesty is your best tool in this situation. If you are working with an agency like Spectrum IT Recruitment, you are able to explain your circumstances. You can use the experiences of these other companies to match yourself to the perfect role. Your job search requirements become clearer and you could avoid similar situations. This approach adds context so the recruitment consultant understands your reasons behind leaving and they can relay this information to your prospective employer. This should not be seen as an opportunity to badmouth your current employer.

Job hoping benefits:
By changing company, you can advance in your career at a quicker pace. By using the short experience of one company, you could be seen as more desirable to another, meaning you can add responsibilities to your CV and increase your salary. There is a balancing act to consider here, and it is worth understanding your own intentions from job hopping as the damaging impact on your loyalty could catch up with you.

For many, the beginning is the honeymoon stage. Your colleagues haven't shared their bad habits and your employer has no idea what your harmless but questionable ways are. If you like to job hop because you enjoy getting to know many new companies then it is worth looking into being an independent contractor. This will give you the option to leave without the stigma of job hopping.

Even if you are happy, it is good to be aware of opportunities outside of your company. This can help you make sure that your skillset is up-to-date and that you are on the correct salary for your location and skill level.

No one manages your career but yourself. The easiest thing to do is stay. If you are unhappy, do something about it.