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Lots of jobs = A good thing?!

Discussion in 'Employment & Jobs' started by Jellyman_4eva, Jan 5, 2006.

  1. Jellyman_4eva

    Jellyman_4eva Byte Poster

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    Hi all,

    I recently got a new job, been here 3 days now, and am already looking at this being my last Desktop Support job, I would like to move on to other things...

    I have had the following jobs:

    First job Modern Apprentice - In depth hardware + basic software support to a small company - 2 years

    Second job - Similar to first job but customer facing - 1 year

    Third job - Desktop Support at a fairly big college, hardware and software - installs upgrades, the lot + some odd development type work setting up servers - just over 1 year

    Fourth job - Current job, PC Support Officer for a University

    This place is very regimented (I will be working on PC's and PC's alone.. and its nice to be in this type of environment, but I hope to be MCSA by the end of the year and would like a job where I could use these skills...

    So I will probably be looking to leave after a year...

    The question is, does this look bad on my cv (lack of staying power/loyalty) or is it saying hey I am going out there and experiencing every type of organisation as I can...

    Just an opinion answer really?!
     
    Certifications: MCDST, MCITP-EDST/EDA/EA/SA/ MCSA 2K3/2K8, MCSE+M 2K3/2K8, ISA/TMG, VCP3/4, CCNA, Exchange, SQL, Citrix, A+, N+, L+, Sec+, Ser+, JNCIA-SSL, JNCIS-SSL
    WIP: Lots
  2. simongrahamuk
    Honorary Member

    simongrahamuk Hmmmmmmm?

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    I think that it does tend to look bad if you leave a position after only a year, personally I would stay at least two.

    On the other hand If the positions shown on the CV show that you are moving upwards rather than sideways then this could show potential employers that you have the drive to succeed, and aren't content with simply 'keeping the chair warm'.

    I've been in my current role for three years now, but after two I was getting bored and was looking to leave, my employers knew this. What I was given was extra responsibilities (stuff I was already doing) and a new job title. This way on my CV it looks asthough I recieved an internal promotion. I've gone from being the Information Systems Manager to the Network and E-Learning Manager, even though I do the same job.

    Still bored with it though. Just waiting for the right job to come along.

    8)
     
  3. JonnyMX

    JonnyMX Petabyte Poster

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    As long as you leave for the right reason it's fine.

    If you can show that you are moving upwards, possibly being head-hunted, then it's a good thing. Employers nowadays accept that there is a certain turnover and people do move on. They have a responsibility to keep their employees happy after all. If you leave because you haven't had a payrise in three years that's their look out.

    However, moving within a year makes it look as if you can't settle down or are easily dissatisfied. It does happen though.

    A generation ago you picked a job and stuck with it until you got your gold watch. I don't think it's like that anymore. A wide range of experience is a good thing to have.
     
    Certifications: MCT, MCTS, i-Net+, CIW CI, Prince2, MSP, MCSD
  4. Arroryn
    Honorary Member

    Arroryn we're all dooooooomed

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    Like the guys said, moving upwards is a key thing on a quick-mover in careers.

    My tolerance for a job is around a year and a half. If I'm not promoted or offered a 'new challenge' within the role, I'm inclined to leave.

    The biggest danger in frequent job change would be continuity of work. You seem to be fine, as all of your jobs have been within IT, and each one complements the other well and adds to your skillsets. It is a lot more difficult to justify in an interview when you've taken an 'odd job'. I spent a year and a half as a fork lift driver, mainly to make sure the bills were paid. That's a fun one explaining in interviews, I can tell ye!

    In conclusion: you're fine :) But I agree with the guys on the 'less than a year' comments - try to stick it out for at least 18 months, then move on to your next goal.

    Good luck!
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, 70-410, 70-411
    WIP: Modern Languages BA
  5. Phoenix
    Honorary Member

    Phoenix 53656e696f7220 4d6f64

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    id say its a bit of a double edged sword
    i've had over 9 jobs over 9 years, thats ALOT of change, however sometimes this is beneficial (the breadth of product exposure and experiance you gain by changing roles is infinate compared to someone managaing the same organicly growing infrastructure for years on end) it really depends on what kind of employee the new employer is looking for, you will find you dont get past the agent stage for some jobs, but the ones you do will be very fond of your varied experiance, meaning the role itself may likely be nice and varied

    as i say, its a double edged blade, and to be honest it sounds like you have done a lot of sideways movement so far, i would stop moving around so much if thats the case, almost every one of my roles involved an upward step to where i am now, so its quite easy to justify the high turn over.

    just my 2c :)
     
    Certifications: MCSE, MCITP, VCP
    WIP: > 0
  6. Boycie
    Honorary Member

    Boycie Senior Beer Tester

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    Some good advice from experience here... So for myself in the first "IT" job it is best to stay at least a year then?
     
    Certifications: MCSA 2003, MCDST, A+, N+, CTT+, MCT
  7. simongrahamuk
    Honorary Member

    simongrahamuk Hmmmmmmm?

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    Boyce,

    I'd say that as it is your first job in IT then it definately will be beneficial for you to stay for a while.

    You will find that you are learning new skills and techniques on an almost daily basis for first year at least, especially whilst you are setting things up the way that you want them.

    After that first year you may feel as though you are getting into a routine and your skills are slipping as you move away from implementing new things (kit, procedures, etc) into the role of network management which means making sure that things are just doing what they are supposed to be doing. But there will always be something to keep you going, a new OS, planning the budget, etc. These are things that keep you challenged.

    It is when even these things become routine that it is time to move on.

    My last role I was there for over 5 years because of the constant change, from trainee to desktop support, to server support and because of the type of company it was the jobs were so varied and involved travelling. One day I was installing PC's in Cardiff, the next I was on the helpdesk, the off somewhere to fix a server problem.

    Im my current role I simply can't see myself staying that long because it is getting routine. So next comes the question, where do I go from here?

    Sure I could go to another place and start all over again building up and managing a network, but what if I get bored after 2 years there? Alternatively I could go and do IT support again giving me variation.

    Ultimately though I think that when to move lies with the person, if the time and the job is right then go for it.

    8)
     
  8. Jellyman_4eva

    Jellyman_4eva Byte Poster

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    Thanks for all the replies!!

    The way I see it personally (And this is how I explain it when asked at interviews) is that the first job was obviously the step in the door... (Win2K Environment)

    The second was where I was transferred to a new sister company created by my first jobs employers... (Win2K Environment)

    The third was where I started to gain industry standard certifications to prove what I was able to do... (Working within a Novell environment)

    The job I am in now for me, is all about getting the experience and finishing the client/beginner certifications and moving up a level... hence the MCSA etc (Win2K3 environment)

    From this I hope to go up a step... The jobs I have been in have been gradually more professional in manner and I hope I convey that across to people...

    I intend to start applying for jobs again in a years time so it will be over a year by the time I get another job (Hopefully if I am employable!)

    Just wondered what people thought though...

    I mean my main issue with IT places is everywhere I have been there is very little opportunity for progression... so I have to move instead!! I feel I have progressed the client support ladder and am now trying to get on the server/network support ladder...

    Another question for you guys also... with client certs and experience and little server experience but hopefully MCSA/E what sort of role title am I looking at? I am thinking System Engineer, or System Administrator...
     
    Certifications: MCDST, MCITP-EDST/EDA/EA/SA/ MCSA 2K3/2K8, MCSE+M 2K3/2K8, ISA/TMG, VCP3/4, CCNA, Exchange, SQL, Citrix, A+, N+, L+, Sec+, Ser+, JNCIA-SSL, JNCIS-SSL
    WIP: Lots
  9. Pete01

    Pete01 Kilobyte Poster

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    I can only really echo what's been said already. I can add however that in my recent experience of jobhunting I've found a fair amount of variety in how employers percieve what some describe as 'jobhopping'. My CV shows:

    1st job- 3 months in first role it was a temp job that was initially only 2 weeks work experience.
    2nd job-18 months
    3rd job- just over 1 year
    4th job- 3 years- however 2 years in company I worked for went under and was bought by another company, employer name changed but job stayed the same.
    Current job- just over 6 months.

    My last job move happened due to voluntary redundancy, I was quite happy where I was doing what I was doing but the client I was posted at decided not to renew the contract so I took voluntary redundancy and looked for a permanent job where I wasn't being outsourced to a client who could just fire my company and put me in the lurch again.

    In one of my recent interviews the interviewer quizzed me on my short times in different jobs and expressed concern at what he saw as a lack of commitment. I explained to him that I would still be in my last job where I was for 3 years even though it appears that it's 2 different companies I worked for had my position not become redundant. The feedback I got from the agent about that job was that they were uncomfortable with my 'jobhopping' employment history, so if 3 years is a short stint then that would make most of Britain's workforce jobhoppers.. Personally I think they turned me down for other reasons but used that as the excuse. The agent asked me if I'd accept the salary I'm on in my current job and I said no I wouldn't.

    The way I see it is that your career has to come first, if your position becomes redundant the company won't think twice about laying you off however long you've been there. The IT industry is evolving so quickly that you need to keep up to date with technology and business trends.

    I left one of my jobs in 2000 because they were still delaying an upgrade to an NT4 domain (from Netware 3.1.1)as Windows 2000 was being released, they'd been talking about it for the whole 18 months I was there and would probably have continued talking about for another year or so,being that far behind in technology and having no real drive to move forward was holding back my career development so I left.

    I left the next job because I wasn't getting the experience I needed in the small .com company- I was the sole IT person so had a 'manager' job title, I looked after the whole network but 90% of my role turned out to be putting together spreadsheets of quotes for software and hardware for clients. It turned into more of a sales role than anything else as gradually most of my days became spent on the phone to suppliers trying to negotiate prices- this isn't what I got into IT to do so I left.

    I said all of this to the recent interviewer when he asked me about my short stints in my previous roles. I've now decided to give my current role another go and am now quite enjoying it- I've taken on board what has been mentioned here in a few other threads about the importance of business awareness and understanding as well as technical kowledge. With that in mind I'm trying to become more project focused with the aim of getting some project management experience under my belt and onto my CV.

    I'm aiming for internal promotion from 2nd to 3rd line now, my game plan is to get more certs, I have the path of MCP-MCSA-MCSE-CCNP-CCIE to keep me very busy for quite some time. I might even stagger some of the CCNP/MCSA(E) exams. In the time it takes to do that who knows what can happen at work..

    One thing I decided on after my recent job hunting experience is that to move again it has to be a good jump up, not just financially but job description/responsibility/satisfaction otherwise it's just not worth it. Also (here's a really big important one)- I have to be really excited about the company and want to work for them. I will have to really want to be part of this company and not 'just an IT guy working for whoever', it's of utmost importance to want to spring out of bed in the morning and look forward to the day ahead.

    So if you're getting itchy feet where you are for whatever reason have a look around, I don't think there's anything wrong with moving around a lot in IT, it's actually a necessity if you want to end up as one of the top people who has all the skill sets you see job adverts asking for at the high end. Some employers will hold it against you, and if they do then that job will probably not be for you. Have you thought about contracting?
     
    Certifications: MCP (NT4) CCNA
    WIP: 70-669, Learning MSI packaging
  10. Jellyman_4eva

    Jellyman_4eva Byte Poster

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    Hi,

    I agree a lot with what you have said and some things seem very familiar to me...

    I agree that my next role also has to be something a bit special in order for me to leave... and I do intend (Provided I make the right choice!) to stay at my next place for quite a while... (Its that big step up to another level which I will want to familiarise myself with so a few years at least)

    I mean when I look at my CV I can see both the positive and negative and I guess at the end of the day thats what the employers can see also... and you are right, some will like it and some will not and I guess I am going to have to find someone who values the pro's over the con's so to speak...

    Thanks!
     
    Certifications: MCDST, MCITP-EDST/EDA/EA/SA/ MCSA 2K3/2K8, MCSE+M 2K3/2K8, ISA/TMG, VCP3/4, CCNA, Exchange, SQL, Citrix, A+, N+, L+, Sec+, Ser+, JNCIA-SSL, JNCIS-SSL
    WIP: Lots
  11. Balian

    Balian Bit Poster

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    I'm in a similar predicament. I've done many jobs. Some HAS been due to being a little unsettled, in my early twenties, moved round, then spent several years in the Royal Navy. Since then, I've found it difficult to settle.

    As mentioned, it's a double edged sword. On the one hand it does show a certain level of restlessness, on the other, I have a lot of experience, in a military sense, in a financial sense, even going as far as doing security work for a premiere league footy club. I HAVE worked in IT, but not for many years. I think in today's work industry, it's "probably" ok to have done a few things if you're in your 20's still, if you were 47 and still in the same boat, it would be very different. IMHO. I think it's not enough to just have good IT skills in a job, but a good all round business sense is needed too.

    IT is the way I want to go, I can't believe that it's THAT difficult to get into if there are THAT many shortages... It would appear that it is.
     
    Certifications: HND IT, A+
    WIP: MCP 2003 Server, XP Professional
  12. Boycie
    Honorary Member

    Boycie Senior Beer Tester

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    Stick with it Balian. Your time will come. Study for your certs, practise, try and gain experience in any way you can and keep applying for jobs. As someone has already pointed out in the jobs forum, employers look for communication skills as being on par with technical knowledge.....
     
    Certifications: MCSA 2003, MCDST, A+, N+, CTT+, MCT
  13. Clyde

    Clyde Megabyte Poster

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    balian said
    " I can't believe that it's THAT difficult to get into if there are THAT many shortages... It would appear that it is"

    Well, some employers seem to want it all and want it now. They don't want to pay a decent wage, they want every skill under the sun for feck all money. And they want experienced staff for entry level positions 'cos they don't want to take the time and expense to train people (an interesting speculation would be is this fuelled by IT bods desires to self train?)

    As for job hopping. Yes, it does look bad on the CV. It may even preclude an agent or HR bod from even bothering to talk to you if it looks bad enough.

    Some things to think about...
    If you have genuine reasons for moving - mentiuon them in the covering letter or face to face if the chance permits. Moving for blatantly selfish reasons is not a genuine reason - the agent or hr bod will assume you'll do the same again and likely give you short thrift.
    Contractors - A history of contracting often puts recruiters off your CV if you apply for perm jobs as the assumption is that you'll bugger off when the market for your skills improves. Not a lot you can do here barring pointing out a genuine reasons for giving up contracting .. i.e. "yes, the money is better for contactors, but not my wife is expecting a baby, job security is more important than the extra cash"... etc etc...

    Job hopping is a fact of life these days but its how often, for how long and why that are the key questions.
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+, Security+, MCSA, MCSE
    WIP: MCITP
  14. Balian

    Balian Bit Poster

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    Thanks mate. Will do. 8)

    Clyde, I totally agree. Some interesting points raised. I also have the same feeling that some employers want/expect too much, perhaps that's why there's "supposedly" in the region of 200,000+ IT job shortages every year??? Who knows. I have to proceed on the basis that, although I may have 1 or 2 too many jobs on the list, I HAVE to persevere. Under no circumstances can I give up, as it's finding work in the IT industry that drives me. :oops: If that makes sense???
     
    Certifications: HND IT, A+
    WIP: MCP 2003 Server, XP Professional
  15. Clyde

    Clyde Megabyte Poster

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    oh hell, never give up! I'm just saying you have to know the score.. else you can end up struggling more than is needed
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+, Security+, MCSA, MCSE
    WIP: MCITP
  16. Balian

    Balian Bit Poster

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    Aye... I'd rather fight smart than hard any day of the week, and twice on sundays. Thanks for the tips though mate. Being mindful of what you say at an interview can make all the difference... :afro
     
    Certifications: HND IT, A+
    WIP: MCP 2003 Server, XP Professional
  17. Pete01

    Pete01 Kilobyte Poster

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    Would it be worth putting a 'reason for leaving' by each job on the CV?

    I always put why I'm looking to leave my current position in the covering letter anyway as that's one of the first questions agents ask.
     
    Certifications: MCP (NT4) CCNA
    WIP: 70-669, Learning MSI packaging
  18. Clyde

    Clyde Megabyte Poster

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    well, Id leave that stuff for the covering letter...
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+, Security+, MCSA, MCSE
    WIP: MCITP
  19. Pete01

    Pete01 Kilobyte Poster

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    Thinking about it I wouldn't volunteer any information about why I've left previous roles in first applications at all. My covering letter will target the company and focus purely on my skills being a good fit for the role and my enthusiasm for the company/role and the prospect of working there. I'll send my standard 2 page CV maybe a bit taylored to the job.

    IMO the first impressions should be all positive and if questions arise about employment history being varied I'll answer them then.

    I've only had one interview where they brought it up that I came across as a jobhopper, I explained that my last job was in fact for 3 years because although the employer name changed my job stayed the same when the company was aquired by another. That position accounts for half of my 6 year career so far and I only left due to my position becoming redundant otherwise I'd still be there now.

    I find the question 'so why do you want to leave where you are now?' is the one to really think about that comes up every time.

    If you get asked that whatever you do don't say 'more money' LOL
     
    Certifications: MCP (NT4) CCNA
    WIP: 70-669, Learning MSI packaging
  20. Clyde

    Clyde Megabyte Poster

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    Pete - I'd only mention it if it was clear from my CV that I'd had lots of roles in a short time..

    ie.. mention that I was contracting - and then mention a valid reason why contracting is not in my future.

    Agreed tho that mentioning why I left is, in general, not needed
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+, Security+, MCSA, MCSE
    WIP: MCITP

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