Survey Finds Tenure in Past Jobs Important Factor in Hiring Decisions

MENLO PARK, CA — Chronic job hoppers may bounce themselves out of consideration for future opportunities, a new survey of chief financial officers (CFOs) suggests. Eighty-seven percent of CFOs polled said the length of time a candidate has spent with previous employers is an important factor when evaluating that person for a position with their company.

The survey was developed by Robert Half Finance & Accounting, the world’s first and largest specialized financial recruitment service. It was conducted by an independent research firm and includes responses from more than 1,400 CFOs from a stratified random sample of U.S. companies with 20 or more employees.

CFOs were asked, “How important a factor is the length of time a job candidate has spent with previous employers when evaluating the applicant for a position with your company?” Their responses:

Very important 42%
Somewhat important 45%
Not important 10%
Don’t know/no answer     3%

“It’s not unusual for someone to change jobs or careers multiple times during his or her lifetime, but holding too many positions in rapid succession and without signs of professional advancement can be a red flag for employers,” said Max Messmer, chairman and CEO of Robert Half International and author of Managing Your Career For Dummies® (John Wiley & Sons, Inc.). “Hiring managers place a high value on employee loyalty, in part because it is so difficult to replace top performers.”

Messmer noted that many job changes stem from a desire for greater challenge, which doesn’t always require changing employers. Professionals in this situation should look for opportunities within their own companies first, Messmer said. “Supervisors are typically receptive to matching valued staff members with assignments that allow them to expand their skills and grow.”

Founded in 1948, Robert Half Finance & Accounting, a division of Robert Half International, has more than 350 locations throughout North America, Europe, Asia, Australia and New Zealand, and offers online job search services at www.roberthalf.com.

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