Think You’ll Be Viewed as A “Job Hopper” to Hiring Managers? Here’s How to Position Yourself

You’ve had more than a few different jobs in a rather short period of time, so you’re well aware you could be labeled a job hopper and considered a risky hire. Now that you’re back on the job market again, you’ll need to get a little crafty to make sure this doesn’t work against you, but if you play your cards right, you’ll be fine.

Any company would be lucky to have a talented professional like you; now it’s time to convince hiring managers you’re not a flight risk. From tips to structure your resume to ways to shine in an interview, learn how to keep your job hopping from holding you back.

Reformat Dates on Your Resume

There’s no need to list specific start and end dates for jobs listed on your resume. Add the illusion you’ve held jobs a bit longer than you might’ve in reality by only including your start and end year. It’s just a formatting option, so it involves zero deception, but this minor little detail can portray you in a brighter light.

Note Departures Beyond Your Control

You have no say in moves made by organizational leadership, so if some of your job hopping was caused by a company shutdown, layoffs or the decision to move offices out of state, note this on your resume. Simply include a brief sentence in parentheses explaining what happened right next to your dates of employment.

Group Short-Term Jobs Together

There’s a very good chance some of your previous positions have been internships, contract work or temporary opportunities, so cluster these together on your resume. Include company names, dates of employment and top accomplishments in each role — just as you would if they weren’t grouped together. This sends the clear message all these experiences were meant to be short-term in nature, so that’s why you didn’t stick around for long.

Be Honest

When you’ve made it to the interview stage, you can expect a question about your lengthy employment history, so be prepared with a great response. Acknowledge that you’ve had a few more jobs than the average IT professional at your career stage, and explain your reasoning. Whether it took you awhile to figure out what you wanted or you inadvertently fell into a pattern of working for struggling companies that went under, telling your story honestly is a sure way to win the hiring manager’s respect.

Emphasize Key Accomplishments

After explaining the basis for your job hopping, take the focus away from it and concentrate on the value you added at each of your previous jobs. Share top achievements realized and skills learned, so you’re perceived as an accomplished professional, instead of someone who can’t seem to hold a job for very long.

Having trouble finding the right job for your skills and interests? Contact Sparks Group. We offer a variety of diverse and challenging assignments at many of the Washington, DC Metropolitan Area's top employers.

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