How to Explain Job Hopping to Your Next Employer

People who have rotated through several jobs lasting 12 – 18 months each fit into this category. Unfortunately, this makes many employers cautious about hiring them because they’re looking for employees who are committed to working for them long term.

If you’re a “job hopper,” you’ll face discrimination not because you lack skill, but because companies assume you’re mercenary and demanding (which isn’t a bad thing!).

But you can make job hopping look positive to employers with the following strategies:


Say You Took the Initiative

You must emphasize that you chose to leave companies because you could foresee your career stagnating. If you say that you needed to grow your skills and made the decision to leave companies in order to build your skills and experience, it will look more positive to prospective employers.

You need to make your potential employer question not why you’re leaving so often, but why. It’s important to dispel any thoughts that you were fired in your previous jobs by stressing the words “I made the decision to leave.”


Say You Wanted to Apply Your Knowledge

If you’re like most fresh graduates, your first job (or first several jobs) was probably had very little to do with your diploma/degree. You can use this as another strategy to justify job hopping by saying you’re looking for a job that’s in line with your “qualifications” and “education.”

Some employers are wary of “paper chasers,” or people who did well in school but have no passion or real understanding of their subject of study. But if you emphasize that you job hopped to move into the right field where you can apply what you learned, you’ll dispel that notion.


Say You Want to Make a Difference

Using the “I want more responsibility approach” is something every employer hears. So you’ll need to vary the approach by saying “I want to apply my expertise in a decision-making role,” or “I want to fully realize my potential.”

You must stress that you’re ambitious and just need the right situation to flourish. This suggests that you’re seeking advancement to your prospective employer and asserts your energy and passion.


Say You Want to Change Your Financial Situation

You may have student loans, medical expenses, or a family to support, which makes job hopping an easier situation to explain. If you tell your prospective employer about your financial obligations and your desire to stay with a job long term, you’ll definitely get a more sympathetic evaluation from your job interviewer.