The length of seniority at a company depends on a number of factors – job satisfaction and salary level, opportunities for development and promotion, the team, office location or company culture. A recruiter or prospective employer looks at this aspect closely, wondering how the candidate will behave once employed by the company to which they are applying. When conducting an interview, they expect a logical, sensible explanation of the motives behind the decisions he or she has made so far.
Those who change employers frequently fear that this will create distrust. On the other hand, those who have been working for the same company for many years often feel that this makes them unattractive on the job market. How do we combat negative stereotypes in this area? How to bring out the strengths of each situation and convince the recruiter and employer during the interview?
Employees who frequently change companies think only of themselves, are self-centred and do not care about the company’s interests. They work where they pay best. Hiring them is an investment that does not pay off – at the first better opportunity they move to a competitor who will offer better conditions.
A seniority of a few months in a company is indeed an indication that the cooperation of both parties has fallen short of expectations. However, changing jobs every 1.5 – 2 years is already considered a natural phenomenon. It does not indicate a lack of loyalty, but rather a search for new challenges and ambition on the part of the candidate, provided that the career path is logical and confirms his or her consistency in the pursuit of professional development. The most important thing is the motivation that leads to change.
The person becomes a partner for the employer. Usually after this period, he or she begins to consider what to do next. If the company offers the opportunity for promotion and to further increase the level of competence, the employee often stays with the company. Sometimes, however, this is not possible – this is the moment when the employee initiates the process of looking for a new employer where they can develop further. In this case, the decision to change company is logical; it shows that the candidate knows what he wants and is consciously building his career. Another common reason for changing jobs after a period of about two years is the natural life cycle of projects in organisations. Employees are hired to do specific tasks that at some stage simply end. If there are no other challenges coming up, they look for new ones elsewhere.
Employees who have worked at one company for many years are not very active, they do not like changes. They are unsure of their professional value, afraid of confronting the job market. They are not ambitious, they value stability more than development. They have problems adapting in new conditions and habits that are hard to get rid of.
The most important thing is a thorough analysis of the reasons for this situation. – Working in large organisations with extensive structures offers many opportunities. You can spend eight years in such a company and never feel stagnation or burnout syndromes. If the work culture in a given organisation suits you, if you feel comfortable there, there is no point in trying to force a change.
A lot in this case depends on the agility and vision of the people managing the company. Seeing that they have a resource in the form of loyal and at the same time ambitious employees, they should provide them with the opportunity to develop and meet new challenges within the company structure. This sends a clear signal that they see the employee’s potential and care about it. The benefits are mutual – the company retains a valuable, loyal employee who does not leave for a trivial reason. He or she feels valued and important to the organisation. The cooperation is long-term.
As you can see, both cases – long-distance and nomadic – can be looked at from different angles. Therefore, the most important aspect to address during the interview in this context is our motivation. Before the recruitment meeting, the candidate should think what lead to want to work for this or that organisation, but also why this cooperation later ended. Was it the level of salary, the lack of development opportunities, the lack of understanding with the team, the commute? Maybe a project he was leading ended?