Job Hopping Is the New Normal
Gone are the days when workers toiled for the same company from graduation until retirement, heading off into their golden years with a watch and a pension. Today’s workforce changes jobs more often than ever: one survey found that at least 21 percent of full-time workers plan on changing their jobs in 2014. According to some experts, that’s just fine.
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“We’re several generations removed from the days that people stayed at one job and one company,” says Bill Driscoll, a district president with the recruiting firm Robert Half, Inc., in an interview with CTW Features.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, as of 2012, American workers had been with their current employer for an average of 4.6 years — half that for Millennials. That’s actually longer than the average of 3.5 years in 2000, a fact that can be explained by the economy and the aging of the workforce. In other words, in tough times, we’re less likely to jump ship until we have something new lined up — especially if we’re getting older.
But how often is too often to change jobs?
According to Alison Doyle of About.com’s Job Searching site, it’s all a matter of why you’re leaving jobs.
“If you look at one year as a guideline for staying at a job, that can work for a job (or even two), but if you work at several jobs for only a year you are creating a job hopping work history and your resume isn’t going to impress any hiring manager,” Doyle writes.
Before leaving for a new opportunity, she recommends asking yourself why you’re switching, whether changing will help or hinder your career in the long run, and whether you can explain to your new boss why you decided to make the change.
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