Hess Associates

Job Hopping Prospectives and Perspectives

Ideas we’ve gathered for our readers about why people job hop, how your company can recognize possible value in seeming job hoppers, and how to limit hopping away from your company.

In May of 2022, the Financial Post reported that “more Americans are quitting their jobs than ever in the U.S., and fewer are sticking around in their new positions.”
Someone who switches jobs frequently is sometimes described as a “job hopper”. According to Monster, “frequently” may be less than every 2 years. For reference, according to CNBC, 2021 CareerBuilder research compared average time in the same in job across different age ranges and found, for each range:
• Gen Z (up to 23): 2.25 years
• Millennials (25 to 40): 2.75 years
• Gen X (41-56): 5 years
• Baby boomers (57 to 75): 8 years

Why would job hopping be afoot? We have been reading about this, and have identified a few possible catalysts:
• With the many opportunities that arose with pandemic recovery, and with the trend to remote work, switching jobs became more of an option for many.
• The desire for higher pay, more benefits, increased flexibility (hours, work-at-home) — in general, for greater happiness, especially among younger workers.
We also got the sense that different companies might look at the job hopping phenomenon differently. Some companies view it in a negative lens, fearing that a candidate might quit after a few months, others take a more positive view, and for example are
open to investigating the person’s particular reasons for hopping.

To this end:
• One idea is to look for clues in resumes; another is asking about them in interviews, such as was the candidate caring for a family member, was it early in their career and they were exploring, etc.
• As KornFerry points out, it also could have been due to a toxic work environment.
• The person could have worked in several high-growth companies, and in turn they might be very agile and able to help your company increase efficiency.
• Also, during interviews, there is the idea of carefully considering which questions to ask to assess for fit, such as why does a candidate want to work at your company, and where do see themselves in 5 years.
• The idea to clearly describe to your candidate things like what the job actually entails day-to-day, because another reason people quit shortly after hire is the job or company culture didn’t match expectations.

Whatever your view of apparent job hopping, you still might want to encourage staying at your company. To this end, we read about the following ideas that might facilitate this:
 Offer a competitive compensation package – a high salary if your company can afford it, and if not, including various lifestyle benefits such as flexible work arrangements.
 Have managers create career development plans with employees towards goal achievement, raises, and promotions, and also regularly meet with direct reports – weekly, and for performance reviews each quarter.
 Provide the training employees need towards goal achievement and internal career advancement.
 Conduct “stay interviews” to learn what’s enjoyable about working at your company, and what needs improving.
 And, in general, keep your hiring and management practices and knowledge sharp and up-to-date!

If you would like to discuss further, we would be happy to chat with you about this topic. Note, this blog post is just presenting some happenings and ideas we have informally noticed in our online searching – it is not advice.

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