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Employees demand more than just a paycheck or they hop from job to job - they practice job hopping

Robert Juriš Economics
Translated by Nina Ďurčová
Dostupné v slovenskom jazyku Slovenská verzia Poslať

Gone are the days when employees stayed in their jobs for more than twenty years, and when frequent job hopping was considered a sign of poor persistence or purposefulness. Nowadays, it is increasingly common for people to change jobs, often several times in quick succession. This may be due to the prospect of better earnings, a desire to build a career, but also for a number of other reasons arising from the current difficult economic situation. This trend is called job hopping.

job hopping

What is job hopping?

The literal translation of the English phrase job hopping means jumping from one job to another in which the employee does not stay for more than one or two years. Job hopping can take several forms. While some people hop from one job to another to further develop their career and skills, others do so to maintain their standard of living in the face of a deteriorating economic situation.

Inflation of more than 15 percent is a strong incentive to find a job that can satisfy not only in terms of job content but also in terms of the remuneration for the work done. However, this is not easy, because in the vast majority of occupations in Slovakia the ongoing increase in wages is still lower than the increase in the prices of goods and services in the country. The only exception is the accommodation sector, which suffers from a chronic shortage of workers.

A special category consists of employees who are unable to stay in one job for more than a few months. Some workers feel that they are not valued by management and so look for another job in the hope of finding a better working environment. Other common reasons are work-life imbalance, poor working relationships, or not identifying with company values.

Employers use employer branding

The job hopping trend is also thriving because job offers are plentiful and suitable candidates for many of them are in short supply. For people looking to change jobs, this situation is advantageous and they can choose from a number of offers, comparing the terms and conditions that will be more advantageous for them. Whether in terms of salary, benefits or commuting.

This is why in recent years employers have been placing emphasis on employer branding, for example. This means that they are trying to create a positive image of their brand and they also care about the working environment, which should be as attractive as possible for candidates.

There is a shortage of candidates in the gastronomy sector and for manual work

"All of these attributes influence an employer's choice when looking for a new job. In our survey of 3,800 respondents, we also asked how many interviews candidates had to attend before they were hired. More than a third of people in Slovakia go through at least three interviews before they find a new job. One successful interview was enough for about 26% of respondents," says Katarína Tešla, Communications and PR Manager at Kariéra.sk.

According to her, employers still have problems to fill qualified positions such as doctors, dentists, interest in the teaching profession has also disappeared. The gastronomy sector also reports a lack of new candidates, as people who lost their jobs during the pandemic have not returned to the gastronomy sector.

Occupations that require manual work are in the same situation. This does not appeal to today's young generation entering the job market either. Once upon a time, the trade was passed down from father to son, which is now a thing of the past. There is little interest in clothing, agriculture and manual work.

What kind of people are missing in financial firms?

There is also continued interest in new employees in the banking and financial services sector. In particular, there is interest in senior positions within accounting, audit and tax. There is also a continuing trend of combining positions, where the position of a complex accountant is often combined with a payroll specialist, or an office manager with a marketing specialist. Such combining of positions is particularly specific to smaller firms.

People want a bit more than just a paycheck

When people are looking for a job, one of the things they look at is definitely the benefits of the job. They want to get a little more than just a paycheck for the hours they work. Benefits should be equally important to employers who are trying to get the best quality employees into their companies.

„To attract them to the jobs, they need to offer something extra. In short, job benefits are something without which the current labour market would no longer function, because they can bring positive benefits for both parties,“ says the expert.

According to a survey conducted by the Kariéra.sk portal, up to 17% of Slovaks also receive remuneration in the form of 13th and 14th salary. This was followed by answers that include a contribution to retirement savings (15% of respondents) and flexible working hours (10%). Slovak employers also offer extra days off, reported by 9% of respondents. Employee discounts and home office were identified by 8% of respondents.

How do we manage the mismatch in the labour market?

In the context of job hopping, it is questionable how the change in the labour market situation will affect this trend. After 11 months of decreas in unemployment in Slovakia, the number of unemployed people started to rise again in December 2022. Although the change was only cosmetic, the number of registered unemployed nevertheless rose to 5.90% after a long time.

Another problem is the mismatch in the labour market, because for every 160 000 unemployed there are only 82 000 vacancies, of which up to 43 000 are suitable for graduates, i.e. people with no work experience. However, what Slovakia really needs is qualified and skilled professionals.

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