The Job-Hopper Label

After being caught in three Reductions in Force (RIF) in 5 years, with a couple of temporary roles in between those three permanent ones, I have been labeled as a Job Hopper and told by one recruiter that I am "pretty much un-hirable in today's market."

I have had some very rude and unprofessional (and a bit personal) negative feedback from recruiters and also some hiring managers that I honestly didn't know why they even interviewed me.     Anyway, I can very easily explain the short tenure at these jobs--in short, every company got into financial problems. 

But on the resume, it looks like I can't commit, have no loyalty or they think I was fired for incompetency (all were no fault of my own I have been assured by former bosses).  I have been unemployed for 9 months and I cannot seem to overcome this obstacle. I am looking for advice on how to move forward.  

Any input you can give would be appreciated.

Thanks - Michael

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  • I am so sorry you are dealing with this!  It sounds like you have encountered the worst of recruiters.  The 'job hopper' label is ridiculous and quite frankly, an excuse for recruiters to not do a thorough job.  The term also assumes that all companies and jobs are perfect and that candidates/employees are solely the problem.  We all know this is absurd.  Let's connect on LinkedIn and let me know if there is anyone I can introduce you to.  I know this sucks, but keep going!  You've got this!!

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  • I am sorry you're having to deal with this. I've found that the askamanager.org blog is very helpful for a number of things and you should find some very worthwhile advice there. I welcome you to connect w/ me on LinkedIn. I am happy to help however I can.

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  • Sorry that you've been labeled that way. I would include in your resume, next to the dates of employment, a small blurb that says something like "left due to reduction in force", so they know it was out of your control.  I wish you the best of luck!

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  • Still having this same dilemma... most recent company I interviewed with the recruiter and front line supervisor (Regional HR Manager) all gave me a thumbs up, the Operations manager and Director of HR together grilled me with questions such as "Why do you think your lack of tenure shows you're primed for success here?" and they also said "We see a pattern of distrust here."   (I hung up on them by the way).     I am discouraged to the point of leaving the HR field entirely.   Enough said

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    • Vicky DiGiovanni
    • Professional and Team Development Coach
    • Vicky_DiGiovanni
    • 6 mths ago
    • Reported - view

    Michael, I am "breakthrough coach" that helps individuals and teams that are stuck in a revolving door or unsure of their next step. If you would like a free consult, please schedule some time here. https://calendly.com/vicky-hd/initialconsult30min

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  • After 10 months of unemployment I finally broke down and took a $20/hour job as a rural carrier with the post office, had to do something for money.   I'm just not good enough or smart enough for HR work, a white male over age 40 so I don't fit companies' DEI agenda, too many jobs and not enough "successes" to be a "viable candidate" which was the last recruiter's feedback.   Tired of being told well you will just need to take a lower level HR job and work your way back up, or you should just get out of HR due to your job history.    I wasted 25 years of my life in HR and $75k in student loans for nothing.   

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