Recruiting, Talent

Hiring Managers Wary of Job Hoppers

New research finds employees and hiring managers have different views when it comes job hopping.

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The research, based on two surveys from global staffing firm Robert Half, finds that significantly more workers – especially those from younger generations – see rewards in job hopping. Management, however, tends to see things differently.

Different Perspectives

Sixty-four percent of professionals think changing roles every few years can be beneficial, with the biggest perk being a higher salary. This marks a 22 percent increase from a similar Robert Half survey conducted four years ago.
Executives don’t necessarily agree. A separate survey of CFOs finds 44 percent are not at all likely to hire a candidate with a history of job hopping because they want to avoid losing the employee in the future.
But workers and managers are close to agreeing on one thing: the number of role changes in 10 years that constitute a job hopper. Professionals say five and CFOs say six.

Other Key Findings

The research also finds:

  • Seventy-five percent of employees ages 18 to 34 view job hopping as beneficial, compared to 59 percent of workers ages 35 to 54 and 51 percent of those 55 and older.
  • Workers with a college degree or higher see the most benefit in changing jobs every few years (67 percent).
  • Company size matters: 51 percent of CFOs at companies with more than 1,000 employees say a history of frequent job changes isn’t relevant if the candidate is the right fit.
  • The biggest drawback of job hopping, according to 46 percent of workers, is being perceived as a flight risk.

“While job hopping can have benefits, too many employment changes can raise red flags with hiring managers,” said Paul McDonald, senior executive director for Robert Half. “Professionals should take time to weigh the pros and cons before making a career move.”

Focus on Retention

Companies struggling with employee turnover need to make retention a priority, Robert Half notes. “In today’s candidate-short market, keeping key performers engaged should be top of mind for managers. Businesses worried about losing talent to the competition should focus on improving corporate culture and strive to be the type of company employees want to stay with long term,” said McDonald.
Robert Half offers the following tips for managers to attract and retain workers:

  • Make your company a great place to work. Promote your organization’s reputation and values to attract candidates who have similar principles. Highlight advantages, such as a positive corporate culture and flexible scheduling options, that make employees feel respected and excited to come to work.
  • Implement succession planning at all levels. Have career path discussions with top talent so they understand how they can advance at your company.
  • Invest in employees’ growth. Offering professional development opportunities can increase job satisfaction of existing staff and attract in-demand candidates.