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Posted 05/12/2016

 Are Spring Fever, Rabbit Sightings, and Job Hoppers Headed Your Way?

 May brings warmer weather and a yearning for outside activities. Birds seek fodder to build their nests, ducklings waddle in lines, and bunnies scamper under shrubs. Ahhh…Spring! But does spring bring to your door the occasional job hopper . . . the candidate who just a few years ago would have been seen as rare or disloyal? It seems the practice of switching jobs every few years has become more common, especially among Millennials. Since this practice is becoming more acceptable for whatever reason, precision manufacturing companies must recognize both the down and the up side of job-hopping candidates. Evidence of consistent job-hopping can be a red flag. It’s important to be aware of the negative indicators. If a candidate has consistently job-hopped, it could indicate:
  • Problems in performance
  • An inability to make a commitment
  • Difficulty fitting into various company cultures (workplace relationship difficulties)
  • A lack of short-and long-term goal planning
  • Less than stellar skill levels – if they haven’t stayed in one spot long enough to master the intricacies of the job
  On the other hand, job-hoppers can make great hires. Some job-hoppers are motivated workers who have specific career-climbing goals. They switch jobs because they:
  • Want to learn multiple skills
  • Want to try multiple areas before choosing their “specialty”
  • Have specific goals regarding compensation/benefits and aren’t’ afraid to move on with better offers
  • Are people-persons who function well in multiple environments
  • Are great hires who will stay, but have just hit a series of glitches. For example, a downsize, followed by a spouse transferring, followed by a job that really didn’t fit.
  The precision manufacturing industry is already dealing with a skills gap and a shortage of talent. Keeping a discerning eye toward job-hoppers is essential. Join your staffing agency in paying attention to the answers a candidate offers as the reason for job-hopping. If the answer is negative and predicated on a sense of “escape,” the candidate may need some forthright career advice. On a positive note, frequent job changes can signify the candidate has both transferrable skills and a predilection for project-based work—two positive traits. If the desire is to grow professionally, the candidate should articulate how each move has been a valid career choice, contributing useful skills and possibly pointing to a strong network of contacts and resources. Ask the candidate to explain how each position helped with their career goals to put things in perspective. The person’s attitude is crucial as well as his/her level of soft skills, such as flexibility and adaptability. Reality Job-hopping is part of the millennial trend. Consensus among even avid hoppers is that a stay of at least two years is appropriate. This may be changing as Millenials grow older and start to “settle down.” In fact, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported the number of “quits” in February 2016 was little changed nationally at 3.0 million or 2.1 percent. Will that be an indication of a flat trend in job hopping for this year? That trend would be difficult to predict, but one thing is for certain: employment needs in the precision manufacturing industry continue. A specialized staffing company like MPS Technical can be a boon to helping fill open positions with qualified candidates—even a fantastically talented Spring job hopper. Contact MPS today to discuss your needs.