4 TIPS TO REMOVE THE ‘JOB HOPPER’ STIGMA FROM YOUR RESUME
“Travel and change of place impart new vigour to the mind.” – Seneca
According to a Forbes article, “Ninety-one percent of Millennials (born between 1977-1997) expect to stay in a job for less than three years”. The days of employees graduating, joining a company and retiring there are rare indeed and in fact, as a recruiter, I am surprised when I see resumes with roles longer than 5 years listed.
So, why do employers still view short (i.e. less than 3 years) employment lengths negatively? Viewed as “job-hoppers”, I’ve had plenty of resumes rejected by this stigma. Some employers believe, if hired, they will not stay long term and are less loyal.
If you’re one of these “job-hoppers”, what do you do?
Here are four tips to consider:
- Be honest. Do not lie on your resume. List on your resume the exact time span you were working at the company. Don’t change dates to make it look like you were at a company longer or list the role as ‘contract’ when you were hired as a permanent employee as that can be verified with a simple employment verification call.
- Diffuse the bomb before it goes off. Using a cover letter or in the employment history section, describe why you left. Was it to take care of a family member? Mention it. Was it due to downsizing or the company relocating? In this day and age of global economics, employers will understand.
- Use the resume summary to highlight the positives of what you gained by being at a variety of companies. Mention your exposure to different industries, systems and if applicable, cultures. Show how you have been able to adapt in each and brought value.
- Change your date format. Now, this may sound counter to what I recommended in point #1 but it’s not. If your employment dates span a few months list the year you worked there or if the months cross into another year list it as “2015-2016” as opposed to “Nov. 2015-July 2016”. Draw the reader’s attention to the description and your accomplishments instead of the dates worked.
Job-hopping need not be viewed as a negative and if presented properly, you can demonstrate that your variety of experiences and companies can be an asset to a new employer.
Darryl Dioso is Senior Lead Recruiter and a Job Interview Coach at RMSG (www.RMSGWorks.com) in Toronto, Canada. For close to 20 years, Darryl has been helping clients improve through designing, implementing and managing hiring initiatives, operational improvements, and HR processes. He is passionate about business, technology, sports, travel and most of all – his family. Connect with him on LinkedIn at linkedin.com/in/darryldioso and follow him on Twitter at @DarrylRMSG.