JOB HOPPING RESUME WRITING CAN BE A PROBLEM
As a job seekers, you may feel your work history is jeopardizing your chances of landing an interview. This is usually because:
- You change jobs regularly
- You’ve worked in many different industries
Applicants that change jobs regularly – often referred to as “job hopping” – can leave hiring managers understandably concerned. They are worried that, based on your background, you’re likely to leave the position they give you, and potentially go work for a competitor. So why bother giving you a job and spending time and money training you?
If you write a normal reverse-chronological resume you’ll see how the string of jobs you’ve held over a relatively short period of time doesn’t exactly look great, and is likely to set alarm bells ringing (if you’re a hiring manager).
Hiring managers are also cautious of applicants that have a background working in many different industries. Similar to job hopping, this implies you have no central ambition to work for their company/within their industry, and can be taken as far as to infer a lack of specialization. Most importantly, without extensive background within one specific industry, specific key industry-knowledge may be missing.
If you’ve written a resume already, you’ll see the issue: one job in IT, another working in sales, and another working at a logistics firm – there’s no continuity. So what can you do if your work history isn’t consistent with the jobs you want to apply for?
Related article – do not miss: 8 Rules of Writing a Resume with Work History & Employment Gaps
HOW TO WRITE A JOB HOPPING RESUME
A resume is a marketing tool, used to earn you interviews. Unlike a Curriculum Vitae, a resume doesn’t need to document your entire work history. Instead, it can be selectively written to present experience that will benefit your application.
Since you are under no obligation to include your entire work history, then you tailor your resume in your favor, by omitting any irrelevant job experiences that may not be helpful. A resume doesn’t need to be an endless list of your work history, cataloging boring day-to-day duties that aren’t even relevant. It’s important to approach the writing process from a new angle: focus only on what is relevant. If this means expounding on one job position only, then that’s what you need to do.
When writing your resume, use a functional resume format – this way you can focus on pitching yourself in a well worded Career Profile or Summary at the start. Try to convey the message that you are looking for a sustainable position, that you have a keen interest in this industry and that you see your future in such a role.
A functional resume format will also allow you to focus on skills and areas of expertise, while taking the focus off your work history timeline. This allows you to omit work history from irrelevant jobs that would otherwise contribute to you looking like a job hopper or someone with a mixed background.
For the central content, choose one or if possible, two key jobs that are relevant, and focus on showing why you did well in these positions. This means expounding on your achievements, including a wide range of key responsibilities, and identifying what skills and expertise you developed that you can bring to your new job.
Remember, you just need to do enough to gain interviews. Your resume will be short, concise, and highly targeted, but this is the ideal type of resume! You just need to garnish enough interest to earn interviews.
With a bit of luck, your new highly polished resume should earn interviews. When this happens, be prepared to explain your mixed work history in more detail.
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