Switching Companies to Increase Your Salary

Average Salary Increase When Changing Jobs

In the past, frequently changing jobs used to be a career taboo. Workers like this even earned the title “job hopper,” and the numerous jobs on their resumes would be a red flag to hiring managers.

But recently, job-hopping has become almost the new normal.

Workers today typically change jobs about 12 times throughout their career, according to a survey by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Another survey by BLS reported that the average job tenure for men was 4.3 years and the average tenure for women was 4 years.

Some career experts think job-hoppers are actually better employees because they’re constantly adapting and seeking new challenges.

The most significant benefit to switching jobs every few years is that it can substantially increase your salary. This is so true in today’s workplace and economic climate that career experts say job-hopping may be the only way to make better money throughout your career.

Empire Resume will delve into the benefits of job-hopping to increase your salary and talk about how much more you can make, the risks of job-hopping, and the best way to do it.

Why Job-Hoppers Earn More Money

Average Salary Increase When Changing Jobs

In the past, workers used to stay at the same job for 40 years, retire there, and then earn a pension. Those days are long gone now.

For a variety of reasons, American workers are changing jobs much more frequently. One big reason is that the average annual raise for a U.S. worker has hovered around 3% over the past several years, according to PayScale’s 2021 Compensation Best Practices Report.

By staying at the same job for years, workers can potentially lose thousands of dollars throughout their careers with no real guarantee of job security. So, if a company isn’t loyal and there are no big raises, it makes sense to job-hop.

When switching jobs, it’s generally the rule to negotiate for a 10% to 20% pay increase from what you are currently making. And, in most cases, you can land that increase. Meanwhile, workers who stay put at the same company may continue to make a measly 2-3% raise annually – if they even get that.

Most career experts say that landing a new job is typically a better way to get a pay increase than asking your current manager for a raise.

If you do secure an offer, you can see if your employer makes a counter-offer. A recent ZipRecruiter survey found that almost half of companies made a counter-offer for significantly higher pay to keep an employee.

But remember that counter-offers can backfire. A manager can decline to counter-offer and, if you choose to stay put, you may have ruined your chances at advancing in the company.

The Risks of Job-Hopping

Average Salary Increase When Changing Jobs

Getting a significant pay increase is enticing, but consider the risks of job-hopping before you jump ship. A considerable risk is missing out and starting over on benefits like health insurance, retirement plans, and paid time off.

When you job-hop, you essentially have to start from the beginning with all these benefits. You won’t have the vacation and paid time off right away that you may desire. You may also have to switch health insurance plans and doctors with each new job you start. Lastly, you can miss out on retirement plan income, as a potential 401(k) and employer match may not start immediately.

Frequent job-hopping isn’t as much of a career stigma as it used to be, but some hiring managers still see it as a red flag. Employers typically look for new hires that want to stick around for the long haul. So, if your resume is dotted with numerous jobs, they could see you as uncommitted and disloyal.

Lastly, job-hoppers may miss out on valuable team bonding and networking opportunities. If you don’t stay at your jobs for a longer time, you don’t get a chance to make friends with co-workers and develop relationships that could last a lifetime. These friendships can also be valuable for networking purposes.

When to Consider Job-Hopping

Average Salary Increase When Changing Jobs

Before you consider job-hopping, speak to your current employer about your unhappiness. It may not always be possible to get the raise you want, but you still may be able to get other forms of compensation, such as increased paid time off, the ability to work entirely from home, or other benefits.

If your employer won’t budge, maybe it’s time to job-hop. Here are some other signs of when to consider job-hopping:

  • Your company is stingy with raises. Some companies value seniority and tenure over merit and have set schedules for promotions. If this is what they’ve always done, you probably won’t break that pattern.
  • You have new skills that make you more valuable. You may have gained several new skills in a short period, thus outgrowing your role at the company. Talk to your manager about taking on more responsibility – and a possible raise – if this is the case. If they aren’t supportive, it’s a sign you should start looking elsewhere.
  • You don’t have a long history of job-hopping. As we mentioned earlier, hiring managers can still see job-hopping as a red flag. If you have a history of it, consider staying an additional year or two at the company to maintain some longer tenures on your resume. However, if you already have shown stability throughout your career, there’s not much harm in taking a better offer every so often.

Job-Hopping with a Purpose

Average Salary Increase When Changing Jobs

It’s a fact: Job-hoppers tend to make more money. However, if you’re considering job-hopping, make sure you’re not doing it solely for the extra cash.

There are many good reasons to job-hop nowadays, but the most significant motivation should be to advance your career, learn new skills, and take on new challenges. If you follow that path, the extra money will most likely come with it.

Make sure you don’t fall into the trap of what some career experts call “Job-Hopping Syndrome.” In this case, you’re never happy with the new job you land (despite the extra money), and you keep switching jobs endlessly. If you do it long enough, it could become threatening to your career.

If you decide to job-hop, make sure you’re doing it for the right reasons, and there’s a rationale behind it – and not just to earn more. After all, you’ll eventually have to explain the changes of jobs in an interview.

If you’re looking for a new job, let Empire Resume craft you a killer resume that’ll land you the new gig. Our professional resume writers have years of experience and in-depth knowledge of current resume and employment best practices.

Also, stay tuned to Empire Resume’s blog for more helpful insights on career and employment trends, including articles like One Resume is All You Need, How to Connect with People on LinkedIn, and How to Tailor Your Cover Letter.

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Average Salary Increase When Changing Jobs

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Maria Gold is a Content Manager/Writer for Empire Resume. She is dedicated to helping educate and motivate people with the latest career articles and job search advice. Her interests range from writing to programming and design. She is also passionate about innovation, entrepreneurship, and technology.

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