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I am now at my third position at a third branch of my company. All moves were for familial reasons. I lasted 22mos at both my first and second positions. This is my first company out of college.

I don't plan on staying at my company for longer than 1 more year, for various reasons.

When I write this up on my resume, I have three separate positions at three different geographical locations, but all within 1 company. Would a recruiter or hiring manager look at this as job hopping?

  • Personally I wouldn't unless they were completely unrelated positions, were the positions a vertical change or a horizontal one? This would probably require some investigation but at the very least the company thought you worthwhile to keep as you moved around. – Ron Beyer Mar 15 '16 at 17:10
  • @RonBeyer The first two positions were related but have pretty different responsibilities. I requested that transfer. This was essentially a lateral move. Current position is very different, and theoretically more aligned with my career goals. – Dang Khoa Mar 15 '16 at 17:14
  • There are alot of reasons for a move. Sometimes the company made you, sometmes positions open up, a parent gets sick. I would just be honest and tell them why if it comes up. I would simply say something like "I loved the company and the culture and wanted to find a way to stay focused on my career. The fact I could stay with company X to continue my growth durring my move, was a major factor in giving me a great comfort level with the move overall." – Nick Young Mar 15 '16 at 17:17
  • moving for familial reasons is a perfectly valid reason to move branches, and even companies. – rath Mar 15 '16 at 17:22
  • I would think that staying in a position for almost 2 years wouldn't be "hopping" anyway, but that may depend on what industry you're in. – BSMP Mar 15 '16 at 20:40
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It depends. Transferring to other departments or positions within a company, across subsidiaries of the same company or going through multiple acquisitions is not considered job hopping. When managers are worried about job hopping, they're worried about the recruitment, training and opportunity costs that come with short-term stays in long-term positions. Most of that isn't an issue when you're transitioning into another role. In most cases such employees fill a much-needed gap elsewhere in the organisation or are better able to grow and thus more motivated. All of this are things they encourage.

What can be a black mark is when the positions you held have no logical connection. Going from software programmer to an admin role to accountant is generally not something you want on your resume as it demonstrates a lack of dedication and bad judgement on part of the candidate. Going from programmer to consultant to project manager is a much more logical transition. Any transition that indicates an increased responsibility is unequivocally ‎a good sign.

As for your resume, you'll want to group all your positions under a single company and indicate the subsidiary or branch alongside the role. Try to show a logical progression in responsibility but don't lie.

Whether you bring this up in your cover letter depends on the positions you held, your experience and the type of job that you're applying for. The fact that your company wanted to keep you on even when their employees don't normally make that kind of transition also speaks well of your work ethic. If you can word it well, that's something you could actually use to sell yourself in an interview. Nick Young's comment is an example of that, though I wouldn't bring up the reasons behind the transitions.

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