Do I Look Like a Job Hopper? | Job Search Radio

Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter answers a question as to whether someone looks like a job hopper.


The premise is that the person is concerned that the resume makes them look like a job hopper. The question goes like this, "I'm a software developer with a job that I've had since college. 1.5 years. 4 years. 2 years. 3.5 years. 2.5 years. I'm a year into my latest gig and started to think about switching industries like from going from finance to tech. How bad does this look?"

Great question. I think there is a more complicated answer to this. Let me start with the premise that I have the idea that some of these might be consulting assignments. Where that is the case, you can aggregate dates into one combined area that shows that you are a consultant during that period. Let's say the 2 years and the 3 1/2 years were as consultants, aggregate the dates there. The reason I have the idea is your choice of the word "gigs"or, "gig" for that last position . I have the idea from not that you might be a person who is been a consultant. If that's the case, aggregate some of those dates to demonstrate clearly.

More important than a tactic, is the bigger picture. You are not talking about career progression. You're talking about how over 10 years as a developer. If my math is right, for 14 1/2 years, you are talking about yourself being purely a developer; do not talking about being a lead. You not talk about being an architect and you're not talking about being a manager. You talking about being a developer.

That may have been a conscious choice of yours but some employers of the start looking down on you because you haven't progressed in your career. That may be a bigger issue for you. Why are you still a developer? Why are people not give you the opportunity to get ahead?

If you've always wanted to be a developer, that's going to be a real easy question to deflect. You're going to have to address in the cover letter.
Again, I don't see these dates as being intrinsically wrong. I just think the bigger issue is that at some organizations, and organizations that like fast-track individuals, they're not going to see you as being fast-track. There going to see you on the slow road.

Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter is an executive job search and business life coach who worked as a recruiter for what seems like one hundred years.

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