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Lead Your Team Managing

What Increased Job Hopping Means for Employers

job hopping
Credit: Ollyy/Shutterstock

Ten or 20 years ago, an employer would have viewed a person who jumped around from job to job every couple of years as flaky and unreliable. Today, shorter job tenures are much more commonplace, and companies have come to accept that even their most satisfied employees will eventually move on.

But just how long can employers expect workers to stick around? Recruiting-software company Jobvite recently released data on what "job hopping" really looks like in today's workforce, and found that the average tenure across all industries nationwide has dropped from 3.75 years in 1990 to 2.25 years in 2015. 

Jobvite looked primarily at data on workers from five industries — IT, sales, customer service, engineering and marketing — over the last 25 years. As of 2014, the national average tenure for these particular industries is below the overall average, with each falling below two years:

  • IT – 1.78 years
  • Customer service – 1.97 years 
  • Sales – 1.97 years 
  • Engineering – 1.99 years
  • Marketing – 1.54 years

Increasingly shorter stays with employers mean that more people than ever are looking for new jobs at any given time. Jobvite observed a 58 percent increase in nationwide job applications since last year, particularly in the San Francisco Bay Area (64 percent). Employers have responded to this by speeding up the hiring process: The national average time to hire (ATTH) for all industries was 58 days in 2011, but has fallen to just 33 days today. [Solving the Mystery of Gen Y Job Hoppers]

However, this isn't the case when you look closely at certain industries, particularly in very specialized fields, like technology. While the overall ATTH in tech is on par with the national average, the 2014 ATTH for various high-level positions, such as analytics experts, data scientists and software engineers, was well above that, with most taking upwards of 70 days in New York and San Francisco. 

In another Business News Daily article, hiring experts posited that tech jobs are so hard to fill because companies don't do a good enough job of marketing themselves to potential candidates. With the increasing number of individuals looking to change jobs, the talent is out there — it's just a matter of attracting workers to your organization.

Tony Martin, executive vice president of recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) and talent management at Hudson RPO, said that candidates choose jobs based on more than a paycheck. So it's important for companies to advertise the experience, values and work environment potential employees can expect from working with them, he said. 

And once you find the right employee, hire him or her quickly, said Sloane Barbour, regional director of Jobspring Partners and Workbridge Associates New York. If you wait too long, it's likely that the person will already be off the market, he said.

Visit the full article for more advice on recruiting the best tech talent.

Correction: An earlier version of this article misidentified Sloane Barbour's title.

Nicole Fallon

Nicole received her Bachelor's degree in Media, Culture and Communication from New York University. She began freelancing for Business News Daily in 2010 and joined the team as a staff writer three years later. She currently serves as the managing editor. Reach her by email, or follow her on Twitter.

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