Have you heard professional job hopping is a hot new skill appearing on resumes in the workforce? You haven’t? Yeah, that’s because it’s not a thing. But I bet some of you wish it were!
Often in the past, someone with a resume that reflected short tenures with various employers had a hard time being taken seriously. Potential employers would assume this behavior meant the applicant lacked the commitment, loyalty or ability to hold a job.
While that’s not entirely the case anymore, some companies are still wary of applicants who don’t have definite and effective career tracks.
But have no fear, job jumpers. There’s a way to defend your scattered resumes and use the experiences to your advantage.
Whether you’ve been bouncing from part-time to part-time or making changes to move up the ladder, check out how to turn your job-hopping history into an asset.
Include a self-summary
It’s common knowledge that you should tailor your resume and cover letter to the job you’re applying for, but when your resume is cluttered with various jobs, listing all of them only makes it harder for the employer to get a sense of who you are.
Including a brief but defining summary of yourself on your resume gives the hiring manager a perception of you before diving into your employment history. It’s best to outline your overall years of experience, not individual time per job, and use strong diction exhibiting your desire for a long-term position.
Include a prior employment summary
An alternative to including a self-summary is to include a review of your previous gigs. First, detail no more than three or four of your latest jobs and then summarize the rest of your work experience in a few kickass sentences.
This is a sneaky way of reducing the number of jobs you list without underscoring your years of experience and skill building.
Upgrade your online portfolio
Chances are you hardcore creep on employers before applying for a job. Chances are your employer creeps on you too before deciding whether to invite you in for an interview. That’s where you can use your job-hopper history to win them over.
Places like LinkedIn are great professional hubs to highlight employment history, but more importantly, to make connections who can vouch for you. Listing your skills and having professionals endorse them is a great way to highlight the strengths you’ve obtained from your various jobs.
Though your jobs may seem scattered or random, there are certain skills you can constantly build on. From team management to customer service, whatever skills you’ve acquired while hopping, make them speak to the overall employee you are on your online portfolio.
Tell a story and connect the dots
Would you read a book that had part of a beginning, part of a middle and part of an end? No, because it’d be incredibly confusing and predictably garbage.
Don’t be like that book.
If too many of your jobs don’t make sense to the employer, they’ll move on quickly to the next applicant.
On paper, online and in person, your job history needs to tell a story of who you are. Most importantly, you need to highlight growth, progression and/or increased responsibility.
Maybe you constantly switch jobs because you’re taking up more acclaimed positions. Maybe you’ve moved on from jobs to take on others with more responsibility. Maybe you’ve jumped jobs to align more and more with your career goals. Whatever your decisions were, make them make sense for the employer reading your resume or speaking with you.