4 Companies in 5 Years: The Benefits of Job Hopping

4 Companies in 5 Years: The Benefits of Job Hopping


There's plus and minuses. I'm generally an advocate of people leaving for more money, but there is a frequency of job hopping that get will your resume tossed at some point - particularly once you hit more senior titles. I also agree that young people in particular should probably move jobs more than they do. I think you personally made the right moves, but I know a lot of people who have seen somewhat similar upgrades without more than 1 or 2 employers.


If you’re a recent grad it makes total sense. But even if you tried to do it forever, you’re going to experience diminishing returns. You can’t expect 40% pay raises every year.


After enough 40% rises you don't need more.


That’s right, but you may want other benefits your current role doesn’t provide (extended vacay or wfh). I took same path as OP graduating in 2012 and having has 5 employers since at an average of about 2 years each. I’m making 3X as much as I did in my first job, but in my last switch finding the right boss, right benefits, and team were equally important to salary. Ultimately, if someone doesn’t like you job hopping you won’t hear from them anyway.


Honest question, are there white collar jobs that still aren’t offering WFH?


Yeah, there are plenty of companies trying to drag their employees back into the office now that things are starting to look like they’re improving. Also, there are plenty of people looking forward to going back into the office. WFH isn’t for everyone.


I totally get that. I actually prefer to be in the office 3 or 4 days a week. I don't have a traditional boss, but I do have mentors, and it's incredibly helpful to get direct facetime with them. The routine and separation are huge for me as well. Plus I live in a one-bed apartment with a wife and dog, so it's not like I have an actual productive WFH setup.


Tons. I also know couples choosing to go into the office for various reasons ranging from changing environment to interpersonal work stuff that needs sorting out IRL.


Yes, I work in defense, where some people (including PhD level engineers) still had to go into the office everyday when the rest of world was shut down last year in March/April.


My company just had a ton of people quit because they’re making us go back to the office full time.


I work in engineering on a physical device, we do technically have the choice to WFH but... It's a physical device


I'm not American but isn't $160k already enough to live a good life? Sound like it is time to stay 2-3 years and learn things on the job. Then maybe look for a rise.


Depends where you are located, your pre-existing financial commitments, your family size, children, etc etc. All that said. 160k SHOULD be plenty in most places.


In 2017, 160,000/yr was in the top 5%. IDK if that is by household or individual salary or whatever, and while there are certainly different costs of living everywhere you go, the top 5% is the top 5%.


Reminds me of people in the orange county subreddit that were telling a couple that $400k a year of combined income "wouldn't let you live comfortably" lol


I mean, you can only afford one maid at that level of income! And only part time! Sheesh.


Yes it’s definitely more than enough. In many areas $63k is also enough, depending on your situation (kids, etc.).


In most desirable areas where these types of jobs exist in the first place, \~$60k is not enough even with no kids or spouse. You could live and be relatively comfortable, but it's not enough to be able to save substantially enough to buy a home and spurge occasionally.


I feel like part of me agrees and part of me doesn’t. On one hand, yea, you’ll make more money. But on the other, if you are getting paid more, you are usually expected to “put out” more and shoulder more responsibility. I’m in software engineering, and I see friends try to job hop a lot, and most of them struggle to maintain a high level of technical excellence because they just don’t have the experience necessary to warrant getting paid more. Overall for engineering this leads to incompetent team leads, and poor software design. By all fucking means try to get paid what you’re worth, but I have been interviewing a lot of new grads, and they want some Silicon Valley level salaries, and yet they can’t even tell me about projects they listed on their resume. Let alone solve a simple coding question.


This is what I’ve seen as well as a hiring manager. People with 18mo or less for jobs and can only give me high level for projects or involvement. Looking at my team, it takes 2-4 months just to get someone’s access ready and spun up on applications such that they could manage something in production. It’s another 6+ months before I’d be comfortable with them being the sme. By that time, there are some people looking for new jobs.


Yep, and then you run into incentive programs/benefits that makes it hard to leave unless the other job pays much more. Things like: - Vesting schedules for 401K - 3 months paternity leave - Tuition reimbursement - Tuition for children - Helps pay for childcare - Gives money for HSA


I have been doing it and will continue to do it. Reason, immediate financial benefits, up-to-date with new technologies and avoid future restructuring.. people are let go after 10 or 20 years.. today, there I no such thing as permanent job unless it's governmental. So might as well stay ahead of the curb


> but I know a lot of people who have seen somewhat similar upgrades without more than 1 or 2 employers. Yeah I went from employer A to B then back to A over the course of 6 years and saw similar. Out of college at $60k, company B after 4 years at 95k, back to company A in a new senior and more technical role at 130k + 20k signing bonus. All that while having a 4 and 2 year stretch on my resume both places respectively. I think it’s really important to test the waters and to move around a little, but YMMV doing what OP did


As a hiring manager, this person's application/resume wouldn't even get considered for a position because they hopped so much


I think I would agree with what you’re saying. Plus applying and interviewing in of itself is a major time commitment, and doing this year in and year out doesn’t sound the most appealing either


Don't forget to invest in developing your skills and accomplishments. As you try to aim for a more senior role, leadership experience will become more important.


This is a huge point too. For me, the skills I wanted were related to coding so it was pretty straightforward to work on MOOCs and projects in my free time and slap them up on Github. If you're not ready to jump for a job, you can still make use of your time by doing this.


Yeah that's true. Unless you're hopping to the exact same job with same responsibilities using the same systems/programs etc you probably aren't becoming as valuable skill wise as someone that stayed put. Depends on the industry but where I work in manufacturing the new engineers basically only start being worth their pay at year 3. Year 1 and 2 is mostly process familiarization


> I also agree that young people in particular should probably move jobs more than they do. I think it depends on the room for advancement. My old job line had a promotion built in between the 1-2 year mark and another around the 5 year mark (of course, not guaranteed, but I never saw someone not get promoted in this time frame or sooner).


I’ve been working a few years less and have made similar gains working for a single company. Pushed for more responsibilities and then made that clear each year for not only similar raises but title bumps as well. That being said, I’m at the point where moving to a new company will certainly benefit me better salary wise. I also like working with a project for more than just a year personally, can do a lot more after 2+ months of onboarding.


For younger folks it’s kind of luck of the draw. My first job had a log jam of older workers that probably would have retired earlier if not for the 2008 collapse. Couple that with an industry that was kind of stagnant and there just wasn’t room for me to move up. I did all the right things and worked harder than I probably ever have in my career and got two mediocre promotions after 7 years when I finally left. I kept receiving promises of that big promotion/opportunity but they never delivered. On the flip side I’ve had friends who worked just as hard as I did but were in companies that were growing. Naturally they were on the short list when new opportunities presented themselves as the company grew. They have had similar success (if not more so) than OP by staying put. At the end of the day, you can at least control your own destiny by job hopping. I wish I would have punched out of my first job sooner.


I've seen the same happen a lot (big growth in the same company if it was expanding fast and stagnant growth with no substantial increases in salaries). Also, some people just get capped at their company based on HR (usually at large companies), and the only way to get a substantial increase is to job hop.


I’ve gone from $61k to $134k over 9 years at the same company. But I also liked where I worked and the team I worked with. That has since changed due to a recent acquisition, so it’s back to the job boards for me.


Totally agree. Have been told my two friends in Executive Search that switching any more frequently than 2-3 years is a big red flag later in life.


I'd like to believe this, but when I look at some of the senior management at my employer, this doesn't seem to matter. It's all about having connections.


Yup. In OP’s case, he/she can get away with it now since it appears they’re early in their career but I’d advise OP to commit to a company for 4-5 years to show some consistency. It can stagnate your growth into higher level roles because companies don’t want to invest the resources necessary to bring on a leader, let them develop a team and really adapt their influence into a team/department and then leave shortly after It also looks bad externally if a company is constantly having to replace a prominent position


Commit to the *people* not the company. If you forge strong professional relationships, when everyone has already left or found new opportunities, those people will remember you.


I agree with that. Your personal network is one of your biggest assets. I wasn’t trying to imply that you should devote yourself to a company. Rather speaking to how it looks from an external perspective why job hopping that often can be a concern. Truthfully if I was screening OP, I would have some red flags because it does indeed look like they are chasing money. There’s nothing wrong with that morally speaking but it can influence processes down the line


Depends on the field. I'm in software engineering and even at senior level it's not unusual to see people leaving after 2 years. The demand for good talent is so high no one bats an eye. They're just excited to be making a good hire.


Think it's the same in biotech. Shits fierce. I've never seen companies haul ass more than when they all ask me if anyone else is interviewing me and I tell them I have 3 other companies interested...


Just make sure you've seen some services or products through, from idea generation until finalization, otherwise you're experience as a senior employee might lack in certain fields. Generally, experience at multiple companies is good enough to get hired, but it's important to establish a network of trusted (ex-)co-workers if you don't want to be spit out by the industry after age 40 or if you're ever fall short of employment down the road. Not working in software engineering, but in my field of work (finance) it's hard to get a personal track record and establish some relationships unless you stay around for 2-3 years. I like 2-3 years as a rule of thumb, because with 1 year stints, it sometimes starts to look like you're getting fired a lot, instead of making the personal decision to move on.


From experience, a person hired into some of these technical roles won't even be a net positive until 6 months or a year in. If the company has any inkling that you'll leave in that time, that's a huge waste for them and they'll probably go with a less qualified candidate that they believe will grow into the role than the super qualified one that'll end up being a net loss for them. At least they will if they have any long-term planning, which seems to be in a shortage these days, but I digress. I really think that OP is not going to be able to keep doing this for that much longer and he might really be shooting himself in the foot. Besides, his current salary should be plenty for him to have a good standard of living assuming he's not in the bay area or somewhere like that.


I agree with this. I manage a team in tech and while I wouldn’t bat an eye at one or two quick hops or hops early in a career, I probably wouldn’t hire someone with a resume full of short stints (unless they were a contractor of course). My industry has a long ramp up time before a new employee is truly valuable to the team and I would not want to hire someone, spend months training them, and then have them leave. Obviously that’s always a risk you take with any employee and I try my best to make sure my team is always receiving new opportunities for growth and raises so they don’t want to leave. But if it looks likely a potential hire will peace out after 10 months I’m probably going to hire someone else.


A former boss of mine said on average it takes two years for a person to learn the ends and outs of the systems and how to effectively use them.


OP is making significant salary jumps by moving, and already making very OK money. Why not keep it up until he reaches a ceiling, then find a place to grind it out?




There is something weirdly broken if he can get a big raise this way every year :/ Would be easy to keep him tho! "Pay market rate and I stay"




Underpaid or changing compensation, agreed. Yet, something is sub-optimal about the labor market if "switch job or leave 40% on the table" is a common thing. Agreed on the ceiling thing as well, handling that with grace would be important for OP. Well, if wages are stagnant, then you make an incentive to switch jobs. Fair enough, but of course people are going to job hop..


I definitely agree with the points you're making - I even feel like I've hit a stagnant point and probably *should* stick it out at the current company for a few years. With that said, I will still aim to interview and shop around at the \~1 year mark again, but will only jump ship for a substantial pay (40%+) increase while at a minimum retaining the same benefits. If a company is willing to hire me, they probably don't care of the frequent switches.


I used to hear the rule that you should try to spend 2 years at a job. Not sure if that is still the rule though. Should be true for senior level roles.


Because if they have a dip in job quality that will likely get noticed and their CV tossed. You need to start putting some years in or it's a big turn off.


It's self balancing. If no one will hire him because of his hoppy history, then he'll end up spending more time at his latest job until someone will. 🤷‍♀️


This makes a lot of sense. As long as people are smart enough to not quit their current job till they've secured a new one, absolutely nothing wrong to start looking at options after a year.


As someone else noted, it likely depends upon the field. If you're in sales, job hopping every few years is normal and accepted. In my field (I'm an academic), if you change institutions, unless it's a clear move upwards in terms of the quality of the institution or you are following a spouse who has greater prominence that you do, they will assume that you are either very hard to get along with, you're running away from something, or your research is trash.


Like holy shit dude, right? 5 companies in the past couple years just feels like it would be a huge red flag to me in an interview process. IIRC I think a good average number was 1 every 2 years.


Strongly depends on context. No one will question moving from a worse company to a better one even if you were at the first for months. If you have a pattern of continuously moving for better employers or promotions, it's obvious the person is justified in leaving, unless you're one of those "they should have commitment to their employer!!" people. If that's a red flag to the employer they're interviewing at, that's a red flag to me. This is entirely different if you have repeated lateral moves though which is a red flag.


I guess it depends on the particular field. When I'm looking to hire people, I'm taking in their skillset as good groundwork and putting them into on-the-job training. I'm looking to invest more in this person than just what they bring in as-is. If I see their history of migration and it appears that I am going to likely find another candidate that is more likely to stay and not waste the training, then I will pick the latter. I mean more power to the dude that succeeds at grabbing opportunity, but it isn't going to really fly with me. I am going to try to minimize my own loss.


Yep. I’ve made the same jump from A-C in my the same timeframe as OP at the same company.


You don't have to put every position on your CV. You have to treat your CV as marketing, you give them information that makes you look good, without lying.


If you're not including 1year job, they will ask why you didn't work for a year, I'm not sure it's much better


I know in in tech 1.5 years on a job is considered to be norm, lots of stuff below that may start looking a bit weird.


>There's plus and minuses. I'm generally an advocate of people leaving for more money, but there is a frequency of job hopping that get will your resume tossed at some point Sure, but then all you have to do is stay at your current job long enough for that concern to go away. And the reality is that there is almost always going to be a company desperate enough to hire that they will overlook job hopping as a red flag.


I've never worked for a company for more than 2 years. I went from making $8 an hour to more than $18 an hour in 7 years. Young people for sure need to job hop more. If I would of listen to the advice given to me I would probably be slaving away at a job I hate making less than $15 an hour. Instead I've stumbled ass backwards into a job that most people need a 4 year degree for.


Move into contracting/consulting and now no one questions “hopping”. It’s what I did anyway — 6-12 month contracts, paid three times what the average salary is for my position for basically the same work (just with higher expectations around deliverables)


My company is struggling with employees right now, as is everyone. We had a manager interview who seemed like a great candidate and had some good experience. He was 26 and had 15 past jobs and my HR wouldn't let us hire him due to this.


If someone does change jobs every 4 months (!?) on average, I wouldn't want to hire them either. And *obviously* they seem like a great candidate with experience. They are used to interviewing and clearly have a wide pool of jobs to get experience from, but you can really question how much he can really have delivered in this amount of time.


There’s no way. Assuming those are are career-jobs and not a fast food gig during school, that means he’s cycling through four jobs a year. You can’t even get through the hiring process that quickly. I also call BS because the recruiting department that sources talent and manages the hiring process would’ve flagged that way before manager interviews.


I see the senior people in my industry (med device) hoping around constantly. There was a joke at my old office about how none of the directors decorated their offices with the usual family pics etc because they weren't planning on sticking around.


What line of work are in?


This is a very important question!


Former consultant taking an in-house analytics position. Undergrad degree was in engineering


What industry. $166K is a lot for an analyst with four years experience.


FWIW, I didn’t have the grades to get an offer from MBB or the Big4 so I took an analyst role with a regional firm. Same firm promoted me to consultant after 1 year. From there I left for a boutique consultancy specializing in turnarounds for manufacturing firms where I was essentially tasked with building out a small analytics practice. I got burnt out from there very quickly and took an offer with another small consultancy specializing in implementation and enablement throughout the data stack. Now I’ve taken an in house analytics manager role


Sounds like you worked hard and took advantage of some great opportunities. Congrats.


I also like that it’s not purely lateral jumps too, it’s moving up the ladder. Props to op!


Damn. I did 7 years at a Big 4 and then 8 years at a small firm. Am now a director with almost 100 people in 9 countries under my authority. I make less than your new job (before bonus, which isn't THAT substainial) I'm eyeing a masters from UVA in business analytics. Think that's a good move?


Will spending $40k on that give you a greater return? You can do similar degrees for way less from different universities.


What tools and skillset do you need for this job?


From OPs answer, they mention big4, meaning deloitte, pwc and whatever other is big these days. So that's financial consultancy. The salary increase makes full sense because these kinds of companies have steep pyramid structures to support their partnership model where the guys who make partner increase revenue (not salary) stratospherically, but at the same time OP should be aware of asking for seniorship on their next job interview, otherwise they'll never make partner, as usually a firm requirement of N years is in-house is necessary.


The Big 4 has stayed the same for almost 20 years (was the Big 5 before Anderson’s explosion) and before that was the Big 8 that still had mostly the same members; mergers have slimmed it down to 4, though. It’s Deloitte, PwC, EY and KPMG. All have thriving consultancy arms that have nothing to do with “financial consultancy”. IT, OCM and Cyber tend to be the largest pieces of the consulting pie for the Big 4. OP specifically said they didn’t work at Big 4 and are now in industry, so this is completely irrelevant.


Haha reverse for me. I’m a former in-house analyst taking a consultant position at a boutique firm... got a 45% increase in salary


I agree with the post overall. This is echoed in some of the top posts of all time in this sub: * [You are not "family" to your company. If you have an opportunity to better yourself, take it. They will do the same when it comes to cutting ties with you.](https://www.reddit.com/r/personalfinance/comments/fdlriy/you_are_not_family_to_your_company_if_you_have_an/) * [Forbes: Employees who stay at a company for more than 2 years on average earn 50% less.](https://www.reddit.com/r/personalfinance/comments/6no7nu/forbes_employees_who_stay_at_a_company_for_more/) The last two companies I worked for, my previous jobs weren't a point for discussion at all. They were more concerned about my skills and overall fit (aptitude and attitude). I was the one who kept bringing up my job-hopping: Me: Aren't you concerned that I'm a job-hopper? Manager: Well, it's a two-way relationship isn't it? It just might be that the company didn't take care of you. Kind of resonated with me. I've slowed down but I managed to quintuple my salary between 2012 to 2020. (This is in the Philippines though, don't get excited.)


For sure, everyone should look out for themselves first and foremost. However, people need to keep in mind that salary is just one big part of it. There are several other factors that people may prioritize. Also, a lot of people job hop every 6 months to 1 year because they're not satisfied with something else in their life, while others are great workers and fast learners who know their worth and need more of a challenge. Also, PF isn't and shouldn't be just tech or finance-focused. There are *lots* of other industries in the world where the salary options and work/life balance, etc. are very different. A lot of people in this thread sound like young men who don't have partners and families yet (where things can change dramatically, unless you're making your partner take care of the household and kids).


I don’t know what field you are in, but in some field the first 6 months is just “spin up” time. So I can’t imagine many significant accomplishments after just a year at a place. I also mentioned somewhere else here that work life balance, commute, team/boss, stress levels also need to be considered. Salary isn’t the only thing.


This. Most places I’ve worked it’s taken someone a year to become good at their job. I do think skills can get stale after 2-3 years depending on the company and culture so that frequency makes sense.


I hate my job itself (lower management), love the perks (every single damn one), and wish I got paid about $5 per hour more so I didn't feel like I should continue job hunting. I still get $20 per hour, and I'm not salaried so overtime is paid nicely, but I just wonder. Then I think about my husband's job with it's commute, crazy hours, lack of flexibility, micromanaging boss, long shifts, no overtime and the fact that he gets paid *slightly less* per hour than I do, and think my easy gig is so much better, even if it bores me to tears.


It's really easy to forget about the benefits when you feel like you could be paid more. A lot of people would probably take a fairly significant pay cut (Even if they wouldn't admit to it, or like to think that they wouldn't) for less of a commute, fixed or flexible working hours, the freedom to manage your own work and everything else that you mentioned. It makes a huge difference in your attitude towards work.


You guys cannot speak to all industries. My issue is people hiring people that don't understand other perspectives. I do a lot of contracting and client services and you have to deliver value day 1. Yeah, you will take time to spin up on the business but you're still facilitating discussions, delivering products, managing resources, etc. as you go along. You are not just sitting reading manuals and knowledge bases for 6 months. You can say it takes 6 months to reach a peak level of effectiveness, but to say no one does anything before 6 months is ludicrous. No one would pay for short term engagements if that was the case. Every time I've got a new position my real "spin up" period where I'm not expected to have a deliverable or be actively contributing to a project is only maybe a week or so. All the administrative and logistical stuff is taken care of before I set foot in the door.


As a technical recruiter of 8 years who did basically the same thing I can tell you that it's completely acceptable while you're young so take full advantage. Once you do it 10+ times though you'll start getting some questions and if you're only incentive is higher pay for each move some companies will begin to be skeptical about hiring you, especially if they need somebody for a longer period of time, which many of the more senior roles do want.


It is also my experience that you have to change companies to make more money. I stay a bit longer than you, but I change companies every few years. Both times I have done so, I have more than doubled my salary. It just takes a little bit of planning and making sure you promote your experience adequately to move one or two levels up somewhere else. IMO this is much better than sitting around waiting for a measly 3-5% annual increase.


I’m very interested to see how remote work changes this landscape. As a software engineer I can now switch companies and get a 16% raise while sitting in my PJs. My company knows this and will need to respond proactively IMO.


Yes but the flip side of that is the talent pool expands nationally or even internationally. If you can switch jobs but stick in your house, so can millions of others in your field. I think it does benefit labor a bit more than capital because the job search process for labor doesn't really change, but the firm will have to find ways to sift through exponentially more candidates efficiently. All that is to say I think it's actually a complex question without a ton of clear answers for exactly what will happen.


Yep hence why I’m interested. I’m not in the market at the moment but I get about 2 LinkedIn messages a day for remote engineer positions lol


>Yes but the flip side of that is the talent pool expands nationally or even internationally. If you can switch jobs but stick in your house, so can millions of others in your field. This. This is my concern - I am engineer for a large auto manufacture, but require to be in the office as I run physical tests (noise and vib), but a big group of my designers and system engineers are loving working from home for the past year. I constantly remind them that while it's nice, they can easily send your work to India for a fraction of the price.


I wouldn't hold your breath for most companies to respond "proactively."


It's really going to shake up the professional services firms. I'm a triple-licensed attorney, including New York, living in the semi-rural Midwest. Before the pandemic, I was driving nearly an hour to get to a company that could afford me and needed my particular skill set in-house. If I started working remotely in NYC, and can command even 80% of the NYC salary to account for the occasional travel expense, my salary will double. The question then becomes why companies try to maintain COL factors for remote jobs. If I can get the same billable rate sitting in Ohio or NYC, why should the firm get a bigger cut?


A lot of major companies switched to a complete remote mode after Covid, Zillow as one example. You can earn what used to be a "California/Pacific Northwest/NYC" salary while living in low cost of living area now. As long as you can remain productive while working from home of course.


My company knows this and appears to be willing to lose all the talent to keep the old farts around.


Is your company D position in a different and more expensive city than A thru C


As a hiring manager I would question the number of moves. But since the first 2 positions were with the same company and you’re relatively young, you can easily explain this as taking new roles for XYZ. At some point this could hurt your chances of getting a position. But it seems to be working for you and the anecdotal evidence surely has impressive results.


We are in the reincarnation model presently. You get a piddly raise or you can change jobs for a massive one. Your job will drop you as soon as its convenient, don't treat them better than they treat you.


Absolutely. I put in my notice after working my ass off for 5 years for a great company, engineering program management. It and the people were hard working and we had good times, until Corporate took over with a merger. I got a 10% promotion to manage the engineers in our plants, but laughed at when I said my position deserved more. Then diverted again by the brand new boss that I had to prove myself. Took a role with a 30% raise and now my old company is panicking because of all the stuff I did, and how much sales relied on me to drive their projects from start to completion.


Ironically I had a conversation about job hopping with my father the other day and he stated the opposite and I need to stay in my current job for another 3 years or he'd toss my resume (he's the top sales person in the northeast in his company) so this is rather refreshing to hear as I'm miserable in my present job and I'm barely in a year. So thank you for the motivation, I'm gonna start looking at other opportunities this coming weekend.


Make sure to be very demanding during the interview process! It’s a 2-way street and like the company, you too are looking for the best fit


Job hoping works really well for many people, but also your mental health is very important. Definitely look for other jobs if you're miserable at your current one.


So many people in tech espouse this but most people aren't in tech and will never see these sorts of increases.


I do this too, though with restaurants while I finish school😂 Have doubled my income though


I just want to say I am in the exact same boat OP and no single recruiter/hiring manager has EVER even mentioned the term “job hopping”. They only care that you are being promoted either internally or externally. I have actually been complimented by recruiters for changing companies. I believe staying with the same company is an outdated model and shows complacency rather than someone taking on initiative and more risk


>I have actually been complimented by recruiters for changing companies. I believe staying with the same company is an outdated model and shows complacency rather than someone taking on initiative and more risk Of course the recruiters would be complimentary to someone who changes their job more often--they're making money off of those people.


Several possibilities: 1. **You are invited:** If companies invite you to an interview (connections or headhunter), they generally don't ask why do you want to move. If you are the one applying without any connection, then you will be hammered with this. 2. **Money talks:** If your job is generating money (sales, portfolio mgt, ...etc), then companies don't care about it. They want the money. 3. **Trendy skill:** If your field is needed and you can showcase your work (e.g., designer, data scientist), then companies will want to have you onboard, regardless. Normally, corporate loyalty does not pay off. You have to take action, even inside the company, to climb the money ladder. The least action you should take is accepting an opportunity when it's offered explicitly or implicitly, which is a very lucky situation but still needs guts to leave the comfort zone and act. For 20 years, my salary barely grew to beat inflation, and it failed to do so in some years. I did not have the gut to even accept presented offers, due to fear of leaving my comfort zone. I only feel bad when we have a gathering with college friends, and I'm the least dashing by a healthy (or unhealthy) margin. Thanks to a work friend who became my boss and changed 180 degrees, to the extent that he called me off and kicked me out of his new office after less than 4 months of his assignment. That was the push I needed to make an overdue step. The first offer I got is a 150% raise. I accepted it and expecting to move abroad this Sept. It would've been nice if I have done it earlier, to enjoy the experience in my younger and more energetic years, and before hair-deforestation \^\^;; But late is better than never.


I’m sure there are some companies in USA that care and develop employees to excel, but so far in my 10 years in manufacturing, I haven’t found one like that. Companies will fire you without hesitation when it’s convenient for them, you don’t owe them nothing, I always recommend to always search what is best for you and your family. Jumping between jobs can be seen as a problem but it can also be seen as: “this guy is good at what he does” so companies keep offering more $$ for him. If you dominate job interviews they will make an offer regardless. I started with a 10.50 an hr, now I’m way over 6 figures doing the same thing you did. Congratulations man.


They're definitely out there, but you will know when you find them. I have successfully done the job hoping thing, but my partner has worked for the same company since he was 18, so when I first met him I started espousing the benefits of job hoping. Little did I know his company has given him large raises every year, retention bonuses, etc. If any of the companies I've worked for were like that I would stay too, but instead I had to hop around if I wanted any meaningful salary increases.


Agree, I would love to find a company with solid values that I could call home and retire with them.


A counter example: I've been at the same company for ~5 years and my salary has more than doubled. You don't have to switch jobs to get good raises.


If you want to get into management or become a more senior individual contributor, this will catch up with you. You are still less than five years out from graduation. So these jumps are “okay” in the context of an early career. If a couple of years, if these jumps continue, you’ll have trouble getting interviews, I think. Also, you’ll miss out on developmental opportunities that could lead to greatly increased long-term earnings (e.g. a company paying for a Masters degree). Good luck!


If that happens theyll just be forced to stay at their company for a couple extra years before they apply again which will be fine because now they have a few years at one company. I dont really see a negative to what he's doing.


You're right, but I think the danger is going to show up if they become involuntarily terminated. That said, it's not like OP can't fix up his resume by taking off one of the jobs to create a better looking employment history.


> I dont really see a negative to what he's doing. At some point it becomes a red flag. It obviously varies depending the industry but recruitment isn't stupid, they don't want someone who will dump them as soon as he's barely integrated into the structure. And long term you start losing out in contacts and networking. Being the forever new guy isn't a good way to build up trust.


My role at company D is that of an Analytics Manager.


This isn’t particularly useful without knowing what city/state each position was in. Getting a 50% raise isn’t that impressive if you moved from Orlando to New York or from Houston to the Bay Area. I went from $78,000 to $175,000 by moving from Pittsburgh to the Bay Area, which is a nice bump, but not especially significant when you factor cost of living.


I have been in the same state since graduating college and fully remote since leaving company B.


Your success story so far looks exciting. I wonder what's next, keep us updated! I have some questions. How do you manage your job hunting? How long does it take you to check job offerings and get through recruitment process? For example you get a new job in Company B. After a year you're in a new Company C. So do you start looking for better offers after like six months of work in new place? Is one year optimal to grow/learn inside the Company before moving to another or does the Company doesn't influence your growth momentum?


The averagee household income in this country is around $70k, you started out nearly making that as a 22l23 year old, and increased your salary by $100k in 4 years. That's awesome for you but completely atypical for most people.


When I was younger I got accused of “job hopping” by various recruiters. I noticed that the employers who made the claim were mostly notorious for mass layoffs, so there’s that. When I got older I stayed at jobs for multiple years (3+) and then companies would ask “why did you stay at your employer so long?” Two lessons: 1) You can’t please everyone. Someone will always find a reason why they don’t like you or your experience so it’s about finding the right fit for you; 2) Do what works best for you. Many of the same companies who hate “job hoppers” have no problem laying off loyal long term employees at the drop of a hat with minimal severance or even rescinding job offers before a person starts. Remember to take care of yourself and your family first. For a company of any size, you’re one of a number of employees — but for you, your job is your primary source of income.


My .02 - This is easy to explain away at the beginning of your career. When asked, tell them you took a $60k raise and while you liked your old company you couldn't possibly turn down life changing money. When you get older though, this becomes a major red flag if the pattern persists. Speaking from the hiring end of things, when I see a 38 year old who has had 12 jobs in the last 15 years, that tells me that there is something about them that prevents them from holding down a job. When you're 26 it's fine. You're just settling into the job market.


Go for it. I stayed in one job for 19 years for various reasons. I was promoted to a similar position that another supervisor was in about 8 years prior. At the time she was making over $80k. I know because she forgot her tax returns on the printer. Eight years later, I was making just over $70k. Much more educated, about the same experience (some coming from another company). I finally kicked the guilt of "not wanting to leave them in a lurch" and accepted a job with about a $30k raise. Unfortunately, those lost income years are just that; lost. So, when you have an opportunity to move on and realize growth and increased income; take it.


Always search for a new job. You don't have to take them


- How much do you feel has been your increase in skill vs the simple fact that Company D is bigger, more profitable, and so can pay you more? Just wondering how I should value my own progression. - Was there a notable increase in difficulty of the work? I hear many folks in certain industries say that the higher they go the more they make and the less work they do.


As a reference, Company A was the largest (1000+ people), most profitable company I have worked for. Company B was the smallest at 12 people. I think the increases in salary are more of a function of gaining more experience, marketing myself as an expert on certain things and tying that back to how I can bring business value, shedding my imposter syndrome persona, and being demanding during the interview itself I have definitely seen a noticeable increase in difficulty/ complexities of the day to day work. In fact, the whole reason I left company B was because I was working late into the night far too often.


What type of work are you doing, (sales, analytics, etc) and what level of positions did you hold as you took new offers?


Well your starting salary right after graduating was 63k. When I graduated college (2014) the highest a student was ever offered right after graduating was 60k so you’re either really lucky or you’re pretty good in your field


Im a big believer in jumping if you see something youre sure is truly better. Why not go for it. And if anyone is wondering, right now (recovering from pandemic) is a great time to GO FOR IT.


I went with a different approach: stay put where I am long enough that I become too important to let walk. Now, I get all the perks of seniority (more PTO, profit sharing dollars being fully vested immediately, etc.) and if I go to my director and say, "hey, company X will offer me more than I'm making here" they will almost certainly match the offer unless it's just absurd (and if it IS absurd, my manager actually cares about me as a person and will encourage me to go take the offer) There was one time when I was considering leaving. I hated the commute (it's a far shorter-than average commute at 22 minutes but I just hated bad drivers on the interstate) and I felt I was underpaid. They bumped my pay from 65k to 77k overnight and then a few months later Covid happened and after working from home for 15 months, I grew to appreciate that commute. Working at home was the absolute worst IMO. Ultimately, there's no right answer for every situation. Hop jobs if you have to do it, because ultimately you gotta do what's best for you. But there are companies out there who will reward loyalty handsomely and if you're at one of them, probably talk to someone before leaving if you have offers on the table


Working in engineering, I have yet to meet anyone that regretted moving jobs annually for more money. No matter what companies say, if you have the skills they need, they will overlook the short work history. Generally, the only people I have turned down for job hopping had other red-flags in the interview. Also there is a big difference between leaving jobs for more money and having good references vs getting fired/leaving on bad terms.


And just like that my whole reality was shattered. I hired in at Fortune 50 company back in 2008 at $63,000/yr; flashforward to 2021, same Fortune 50 company based in MCOL US, and just now cracked $120,000. Fuck that shit. I'm pursuing options outside of current employer, but feel like I'm in a bit of "golden handcuffs" situation (or need to come to terms with the fact that I'm not as good as I think I am...which, at the same time, means I'm way overcompensated for the work that I am doing!). Right now my strategy is "stable W2 + invest in real estate = 'fuck you' at 50 [or sooner].'"


Those fortune X companies didn't make so much money by being generous to their employees. The media will be quick to point out the exceptions, like a company that gave generous stock options or huge raises, but 99% of them are looking to squeeze every penny out of you with an aggressive culture of minimizing rewards. I'm debating whether I should move on from one myself.


In a tight labor market or in high-demand jobs, it's worth it to move around. When there's not enough labor to do what you do, companies have to compete and you end up being the beneficiary.


My only counter is that I’ve made good money, but absolutely hated my job and had to work crazy hours. I make 50% less now, but can take up to a month off a year paid vakay, normal holidays, good benefits and perks, and work the exchange on the side for extra savings. I’m much happier now, but I’m glad I went through that money grind to realize what made me happy and what made me miserable. If you’re making bank and happy, fucken A, super stoked for ya.


I had a very similar situation! Technically, I make a little bit more per hour now, but I work *way* less hours. It’s so nice not hating every waking minute of my life anymore.


I make less money than a lot of my peers with the same education, but I make the same and often more hourly when you consider I only work 37.5 hours a week and have 24 paid vacation days a year. Zero regrets.


Similar experience. $32k to $125k in 5 years. I will never understand friends and former coworkers of mine who stay put at places making peanuts relative to what they could make if they just jumped ship. I know folks who have been getting paid about the same for 5, 6 years with piddly COL annual raises to show for it at best. Why???


When switching jobs, other factors besides pay should be considered: Commute, Work/life balance, team/boss, learning opportunities, stress levels, etc. I recently turned down a 20% salary increase because I just didn’t think it was worth risking 5 stars in all the other categories. I would much rather have a 110k job that’s a 5 star in every category, then a 140k job that’s shit. I suppose it depends on how much of a risk taker you are as well.


This. With a family and a job that allows me to wfh as needed, even pre pandemic.. I’ve turned down a couple of 20-30% jumps starting a new line of work or even similar role. Turned out, I got that same raise. You have to also be adamant about pay raises, and be able to back up the reasoning on why you deserve it. I’m not saying to not look for another job, because that is where you most often get the biggest pay bumps, but money shouldn’t always be your motivating factor to jump ship. Lastly, if you don’t want to leave your company, it’s still okay to go out and interview for like roles. It’s a good way to get an idea of how your job market is as well. It will also give you some hard numbers on what your fair value is, and you can use that as a leverage of sorts when you want to talk pay raises again.


This whole thread almost completely ignores switching jobs for anything BUT more money. Weird thread for sure.


I would love to make more money, but I have unparalleled flexibility and work less hours than anyone I know in the same pay range. So it's hard for me to so willingly abandon that for a job that in all reality, I'll be less happy with. Also retail isn't exactly primed for movement. It seems like everyone making moves like this is in a tech sector.


I’m 30k to 100k in 5 years and I only switched jobs once, and switching barely got me more. I do feel like since I switched, I haven’t worked consistent 40 hr weeks in years. Work life balance is seriously too notch when you establish yourself at a company.


I think it really depends quite how frequent the job hopping is. We often say we'd rather have someone really good who we know will leave in a couple of years compared to some average who will stay forever. But people who start to interview again after 10 months are a bit of a red flag for me. It takes a while to get people up to speed in my area of work, and it wouldn't be worth the hassle for someone who was going to leave so early into their employment.


Here is my progression as basically a civil engineer in Australia. Job hopping has definitely been fruitful. Year 0 (Mid-2015) - Company A - 60k Year 0.5 - Company A - 62.5k Year 1 - Company A - 70k Year 2 - Company A - 80k Year 3 - Company B - 100k Year 4.5 - Company C - 150k + Bonus for fewer hours and have been FT WFH since COVID My hourly rate of pay increased by 85% going from Company B to C. My manager said "there's more to work than earning money", so wanted to yell back in his face, "that's easy for you to say when you are earning 3-4x my salary". Hanging out at my current place of work hopefully for an internal promotion and pay bump before I evaluate if I want to do a different challenge.


Also a civil engineer in the US. I can safely say this would not happen in the US. Even if you got your engineering license here in the states, 150k at 4.5 years is VERY unlikely unless you start a company. This is a salary of like a 15- 20 year experienced engineer. Civil is an industry where money comes with time. We are definitely not like software engineers that get paid 6 figures out the gate.


Oh, wow! Thank you for sharing :) this is so interesting to see. I have done the opposite of you — got my current job around the same time (late 2016) with the same starting salary. I had one in-role promotion since then, am now making closer to what you were making in June 2020 w/ Company C. I wonder how that stacks up to others who have been at the same company for that length of time? Also out of curiosity, how did you factor in happiness/enjoyment @ your job (if at all?) Did you find any trade-offs w/ work-life balance when you switched companies, and if so was it worth it?


I had something similar happen with me. The secret is WFH. This small luxury completely changed the dynamic of my job and the "stress" I used to endure from it.


2 years, 20% has been cadence since 2010


Were these all in the same city? Because otherwise there will be a CoL adjustment factor.


Forget what anyone says, making $166,000+ is much better than $82,000 for an indefinite period of time. The way to get around your potential diminishing returns of being known to hop too much is to just remove Company B from your resume. Maybe even Company C. The gap doesn't matter since you already landed Company D and have in demand skills. You worked two years at the same company, did some personal development, worked some more at higher efficiency.


It depends on how many hours you work. $82k for 40 hrs/wk is much better than $166k for 80hrs/wk


How exactly do you market yourself in this fashion? Are you applying for what you’d consider to be promotable roles if staying with the same company? I do not have a degree but my peers often have graduate degrees or MBA’s. I often feel I’m stuck working for the same company due to my lack of degree.


Companies care about experience and job experience is more valuable than university experience. Don't let your doubts hold you back from where you want to go.


Experience matters, nobody should give a shit about your degree after 3 years in the field. It is whether you can do the job and work hard. Job hop to *different* verticals (business areas) and different company sizes to broaden your experience


When I interview new employees, I always note their work history and mention it during the decision making meeting. I'm always told that it wasn't an issue that a interviewer was job hopping, working 12 to 18 months between jobs. I thought it was.


Similar data points for me as a 2011 grad: Company A - Jan 2012 - Jun 2013 - $60k (18 months) Company B - June 2013 - June 2018 - $75k, up to 110k (5 years) Company C - June 2018 - March 2021 - $190k (2.75 years) Company D - March 2021 - Present - $290k Organic growth of staying in one place will never outpace switching jobs. Which is sad, because I really liked my coworkers at company B and C and would’ve stayed if not for massive pay increases to go elsewhere. That said, I’ll probably ride out my present job for a little while. Money is good enough, team seems nice, and there is some growth potential for a leadership role.


Dude, your current salary is impressive! Are you in tech?


lol it's almost always tech, or IB. Do you think that a lab tech or an accountant is going to see the same opportunities and raises like these posters?


My experience job hopping has been learning that "training provided" actually is a selling point.


Did your other benefits scale up as well as salary? I kind of ran something similar, growing from 56 to 94 in 3 years - I had to fight more for the an extra week of vacation than the bigger salary bump. Did you notice anything similar or were there any friction points in negotiating?


Aww I did it wrong. I did 12 jobs in about 15 years. It went like... Minimum wage.. 20p more than minimum 50p more than minimum Minimum wage.. Etc etc etc Minimum wage.. Less than minimum wage l 1 pound more than minimum wage 2 pound more.. I dunno why but my stupid brain is telling me to tell you, that ima quit while I'm ahead and stick with this one till I die


My situation is similar to yours except I hopped around within my company. I have the benefit of work for a large defense contractor though. So I would say you don’t really need to move companies of the company you work for is larger enough. I just hit my 5 year anniversary at my job and through promotions and changing departments I have almost double my salary in 5 years. I work in engineering. I highly recommend taking new roles every couple years. It helps you keep from becoming stagnant as well.


I think that things are definitely changing. It seems like companies are more concerned with just finding good enough employees and don't mind or care that you've hopped around. It makes sense for recent grads/younger people to do that. Of course that's a generalization and also depends on the industry


I also have had multiple job switches over the past few years and have drastically increased my income. To me the big takeaway is that it should be a red flag to companies that if they want to keep employees they need to pay better and have better benefits. The first job paid $45,000 a year and in 4 job changes on 4 years I made it to $120,000/yr. If I had stayed at the first job for a few years of maybe be at $55,000/yr and I'm supposed to have made that sacrifice to be a good employee? Nah fuck that. Be better employers and give employees a reason to stick around.


My wife has job hopped her way from $18/hr to $24/hr in the span of 2.5 years. I hate that she leaves a place every 6-12 months but it's been working. She works in a field thats always understaffed so she can get on at pretty much any facility.


I have done this when I was fresh out of college (90s) and it's the fastest way to a raise. The current company you work for will not raise your salary but leaving and going somewhere else will. I did this until I got into a senior position then I stayed for a few years. I loved the job but their was not a real pay increase. I left that position and went someplace else for 2 years and came back to that old company asking if they had a position available. I got a position and a salary increase. I would say changing jobs every 3-5 years once in a senior position is healthy.


My salary increased 66% staying at the same job for 5 years. Pretty good, but maybe I should look around...


I changed jobs 3 times in five years for a 300% pay increase. You might want to look around. Each job was doing the same work but I did have to move one time.


I'm guessing you're a developer/engineer? If so, it's not that uncommon to jump jobs so frequently. My track record is pretty much the same, only staying at places for about a year, the longest being 2.5 years. As for the pay, job D might be high paying but the next one (if you lose job D) might not pay as high so it's best to treat it like you're still working at job C, and put as much into savings as possible. Also, if you are in development/engineering, I find that people often don't get to climb the ladder often. Instead, to advance you need to jump diagonally to a new ladder.


Like many have said, from a money perspective especially if you’re young it makes complete sense. A few things worth considering, assuming that staying longer will build additional competency you’re missing out on that. Additionally, if money is your only goal you’re looking pretty good but I’ve hit a point in my career money wise where other perks are starting to become important to me like pto


As someone who could be seen as a job hopper as well I can add my (less impressive) experience as well. Background: history BA, didnt want to teach, jobs were tough to find Company A: $25k (cheap staffing job) 2016-17 Company B: 35k (it recruiting job) 2017-18 Company C: $50k (accounting) 2018-20 Company D: $67k (accounting) 2020-present. I went from not knowing what I wanted to do, to having a career path and a job I enjoy. Now if I can only get what OP is getting in salary, I’ll be set.


How did you get into accounting?


Fiancé works in accounting at said company, they had a lower accounting role and they were desperate to fill it. Grinded for 2yrs doing about 50hr weeks to barely get by. They didn’t want to offer me the higher role by then so when a friend reached out that their company was hiring for that role, I applied and good the job. Even if you’re job hopping, learn as much as you can about the industry or you’ll doom yourself. My previous company still hasn’t filled my role, or the role I wanted.


Works well in some fields but in mine Chemistry, I usually get companies competing to see who can offer me the biggest pay cut. I have to tell recruiters to blow off all the time with offers of a 30-50% paycut. I find a decent company I try to hold on to my job for dear life.


In my career field (veterinary), new jobs generally mean significant raises. Also, learning how other places do things can help you improve your current place. :)


I was the lowest (or one of the lowest) paid workers at my role a few years back, not as impresive as you but had to job hop 3 times to earn just over average for my role. What you've done however is pure magic. Congrats.


What industry are you in? My industry (construction engineering and management) sees frequent turnover because unless you work in a large metro area, GCs and large subcontractors have projects all over the country and travel is frequent. I see a lot of people quit or change companies because of location issues given the nature of large scale construction projects, so it would be easy to explain away on a resume.


What specific field are you in? These jumps in salary are pretty impressive.


I just started my job and I’m already planning my next move. I don’t like this role at all and I’m trying to make it to 6 figures already. Have you found it difficult to explain why you stayed in your roles for such a short period of time?


I'm guessing you are in a field that is in high demand with lots of opportunities. Please understand that most people do not have that type of option.


I'm glad you were able to increase your salary so quickly, you did a great job and earned it. You should be careful about moving into leadership roles. Companies will be concerned about hiring a manager and beyond if they look at your job history, and expect you to stay for 12-15 months. Those roles require investment and it'll often take at least 3-6 months before you are fully onboarded and effective, if not longer. It might make sense to "suck it up" at your current position for 2-3 years before looking elsewhere if your goal is to continue with management. Otherwise, you'll need a really good story about why "this 5th company is different than the others."


Did these different companies offer different titles? I worry about the prospect of making too many "lateral moves" and never getting leadership experience. (I assume I'm more likely to get leadership experience by staying in one place long enough, but that might not be the case).


This also means that an employer should be willing to overpay an employee who is considered indispensable. I have one such employee, and her total wages, including bonuses, are 50-60% higher than what she get earn elsewhere, so I think it's highly unlikely she'd bounce. If she ever left, I'd probably have to replace her with two new hires.


What type of work are you doing?


One downside you never see mentioned is missing out in the easy-lull periods. This might be a 'me problem' but anytime I get a new job the first 6-12 months are stressful. I'm trying to meet everyone, learn the culture, learn the new systems, establish goals, make good impressions. I rarely take vacation in the first 6 months if I can help it. Once you get that first year performance review out of the way, it really eases that burden - at least for me. Reaffirming that I am 'doing it right' and making meaningful contributions AND that my boss likes me makes my stress level plummet.


I’m with you. Loyalty is not really rewarded, at least not in the corporate world. I think after a few years at a company you need to make a call: stay and work hard and watch your company stocks grow, maybe exponentially(if applicable) and climb the ladder because you’re truly passionate about this company OR keep job hopping and increasing your salary at every turn. If the industry doesn’t penalize you for it, you’re not in the wrong for abusing this strategy, as have I. It’s the onus on your company to give you more incentives to stay. This is also partly why boomerang hires work so well. You did leave, yes, but you also learned a lot “out there” and still have relevant experience with that company, so they’re happy to throw money at you to get you back.


I wonder if you could have stayed with Company A for 4 years and then gotten hired at Company D for the same salary? My husband did that, basically doubled his salary by switching once after a few years. Seems less stressful and looks a little better on your resume longevity wise.


As a hiring manager, when I see a young person who's hopped jobs, I view a go getter. When I see a young person who's been at the same place for a while, unless there's substantial promotions, I see it as a complacent person. Good for you on the jobs!


I’ve been at the same company for 6 years and my pay has gone from 50k to 73k. So jealous of your 100k. I did get a masters and half paid for which is a 60k benefit.


Yes, move to get higher wages when you can, but don't do so at the cost of growth within a company. No skills/difficulty growth and no income growth in a professional setting means might as well look at other options. I think moving every year is a bit much. Personally I've found moving every 2-3 years has gotten me great results. Most jobs have given me one decent bump in salary at that job and then I've gotten a bigger one when I switch. Echoing a point that others have made, by moving this frequently, you risk not deepening your knowledge. Every job I've been in, my role has changed over time, I've picked up valuable skills and then parleyed those skills into a new job **eventually**. Sometimes being the new person can get you the fun new projects, sometimes being the new person means you need to prove yourself a bit before you get the fun stuff.


It's worth noting that the main reason for your recent raise is a change in job entirely into management, not the fact that you job hopped previously. Your experience would have contributed but I really don't think switch companies would have been the main contribution. I graduated over 5 years ago BSc in biology and have worked for two companies. The first I left purely for salary and ceiling. The one I am at now I know full well I could get paid more elsewhere but the responsibilities I have here set me up for director level positions in the near future whereas a similar or even more senior role at other companies would slow my ability to be eligible for those positions. Also it's just great working here whereas the pharma/biotech industry is generally very cutthroat. Company A (6 weeks): $34k Company A (18 months): $44k Company B (12 months): $70k Company B (2 years): $95K Company B (6 months): $118K Company B (6 months) $150k