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career advice: is it recommended to work for multiple employers?

 
#1 career advice: is it recommended to work for multiple employers?
13/01/2008 12:33

adam

I’d really appreciate your advice – especially from recruitment consultants and those of you who can advise from experience. I simply cannot figure it out by myself.

From the career planning perspective is it better if one changes employers or it is ok to stay long with one employer as long as it offers right career progress? Once you are recruiting new staff do you prefer candidates who have worked for few companies?

Long story short... I’ve been with Fortune 500 multinational for 3 years now and I have covered already 2 different roles/departments. I have good reputation in the firm, already planned next career move and potentially can become Head of Function in 5 years time.

Recently however I was offered to move to another Fortune 500 multinational. Key benefits of the move are money (got 40% increase) and role (in house M&A). The role might be achievable with my current employer in the future, but not now. New employer offers it now.

Both firms are big, international, offer training and personal development.

Is it advisable to change employers when it comes to career management (looking from mid/long-term career prospect)? Some friends of mine say I should change because it shows flexibility and is viewed favourably by recruiters. On the other side there is nothing wrong with my current job.

Many thanks in advance for your opinions.

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#2 RE: career advice: is it recommended to work for multiple employers?
13/01/2008 13:40

p to adam (#1)

I don't have enough recruiting experience to help you with the question itself, but I would recommend to tell your employer about the offer you received.

You might get an instant raise and promotion/change in role.

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#3 RE: career advice: is it recommended to work for multiple employers?
13/01/2008 20:23

jon to adam (#1)

change.

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#4 RE: career advice: is it recommended to work for multiple employers?
13/01/2008 20:48

anony-mouse to jon (#3)

Gut instinct would be to move, unless your employer can keep you with a decent counter-offer.

I'm in a similar position, and I think early in your career 3 years is a decent time to spend with a single company. Less than one year, and you look like a quitter. But after three years experience if there's a better offer out there then go for it.

One thing worth carefully thinking about is whether this is a better offer in terms of responsibility, progression and quality of life.

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#5 RE: career advice: is it recommended to work for multiple employers?
14/01/2008 09:22

Anon to anony-mouse (#4)

The 'perfect' time I was told was 4.5 years for every job. If you spend 4.5 years then move to what is usually a larger salary and more senior role then you will stay on course. Otherwise it is easy for companies to underpay and 'lose' you in the system as it were. It isn't until you see another company and what they have to offer will you know what you are missing after these 4.5 years.

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#6 RE: career advice: is it recommended to work for multiple employers?
14/01/2008 10:42

adam to Anon (#5)

Thanks all for replies.

Question to recruitment consultants: does it matter to you if a candidate's careers "covers" few employers (i.e. shows flexibility, ability to adjust, etc) or it doesn't really matter?

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#7 RE: career advice: is it recommended to work for multiple employers?
14/01/2008 10:58

Mars A Day to adam (#1)

It certainly dosen't hurt to have several companies on your CV - in fact becoming entrenched within one firm for too long can make future employers question whether you could successfully integrate elsewhere. If you have valid reasons for moving (whether positive or negative) then do so - and in this instance I would say it makes a lot of sense to take the offer.

Counter offers are often attractive - after all no one likes change, and the idea of getting more money/new role etc in a familar firm can be enticing. Remember though that at the point of counter offer the trust between you and your current company has been broken - you suddenly remind them that 1 you are a commodity after all 2 you may need to be replaced so they should be looking at who could succeed you 3 you are likely to leave should an even better offer come along (therefore they may begin looking to backfill). Also whatever they promise you is likely to be in the future not immediate - so hard to secure unless it's just money in your basic salary.

The new job sounds to be a great move for your career - and the important thing whether remaining within one company or moving is that you should be making steady progression. The new role offers it so take it.

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#8 RE: career advice: is it recommended to work for multiple employers?
14/01/2008 13:06

experienced to Mars A Day (#7)

I would agree totally with Mars here. Its an absolute no brainer make the move

Taking the plunge of leaving a company is always difficult, particularly if its your first job. You are always unsure and nervous and to be honest with you the first 3-6months in the new job will be so much harder than your work now. However once things settle down you will relish the new role, grow further in yourself and be excited by the new challenges.

If you stay where you are, no matter how much you move internally you get known and pigeon holed as something and run the risk of becoming stale. Also internally payrises are never as good, even when tied in with promotions.

I wouldn't even think about the possibility of becoming head of department in 5 years. A lot can happen in 5years, a lot can happen in a year, and that role wont exist in 5 years I am sure.

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#9 RE: career advice: is it recommended to work for multiple employers?
14/01/2008 13:33

adam to experienced (#8)

Mars and Experienced - many many thanks for advice!

Experienced - you're spot on: I'm afraid to give up my first job. The new job offers attractive conditions (both financially and development wise) and I think I'd like to move. The thing that paralyses me is the fear of loosing the "reputation/career prospects" I have with my current firm. My Dad was also advising me that new company = new challenges and I can progress there as well. I just guess that because my current job is my first job and the career path with my current firm looks to me more tangible (as I'm already in the firm) than with the new employer, it's soooo difficult for me to step out of the comfort zone and make the move. And that's why the advice I get from you guys (who see it from perspective and own experiences) is really helpful. Thanks!

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#10 RE: career advice: is it recommended to work for multiple employers?
14/01/2008 14:15

Mars A Day to adam (#9)

Adam go for it! Let us know if you take it and how you get on!

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#11 RE: career advice: is it recommended to work for multiple employers?
14/01/2008 14:29

experienced to Mars A Day (#10)

Just go for it. If you are succesful once you will be succesful in the next role. A lot of where we get in life is based on contacts, so if nothing else 2 jobs double the contacts

Talking move on Mars. Any recruitment currently for TMT (telecoms) consultants at manager level? :-)

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#12 RE: career advice: is it recommended to work for multiple employers?
14/01/2008 15:18

anon to experienced (#11)

Key question to ask:

WHY are they paying 40% more?

You say it's an M&A role... we all know what THAT means! Kiss those balmy summer evenings in a pub garden with a cool beer in your hand goodbye!

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#13 RE: career advice: is it recommended to work for multiple employers?
14/01/2008 15:56

adam to anon (#12)

Again thank you for replies. Much appreciated.

Why do they pay +40%? From their (new company's) perspective they pay +15% as, when they asked me for my current salary, I added +25%. I thought they knew I said more than I have, but they took it as a starting point and added some incentive from their site. The other point is that the Director who runs the department seems to be (and has such a reputation) very decent/fair manager. Maybe he wasn't driven by money so much...?

Hours in industry (pharma in this case) are not IB type. From what I know it's more 9-19 type. So not too bad.

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#14 RE: career advice: is it recommended to work for multiple employers?
14/01/2008 16:04

anon to adam (#13)

How did you find out the director's reputation?

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#15 RE: career advice: is it recommended to work for multiple employers?
14/01/2008 16:50

adam to anon (#14)

I talked to people in the new company who work in other departments and they told me Director's reputation in the firm. Also, during interviews, all other guys who grilled me were very positive about this person (I know he's their boss, but still the consistency of opinions was there). On the other side sometimes you meet people and you have this feeling that this person is... I immediately had good feeling about the Director.

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#16 RE: career advice: is it recommended to work for multiple employers?
15/01/2008 08:48

experienced2 to adam (#15)

From my experience (what I was told by some headhunters when I was changing the jobs) having multiple employers is definitely an advantage. Of course as long as you can show at the same time continuous progress.

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#17 RE: career advice: is it recommended to work for multiple employers?
15/01/2008 12:29

aNon to experienced2 (#16)

Plus you can always move back after a year or two into your first company's m&a section if you so wish.

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#18 RE: career advice: is it recommended to work for multiple employers?
16/03/2008 17:54

Expat to aNon (#17)

I'm sure adam's made his decision long ago, but since I've just seen this thread I thought I'd mention that my biggest single career regret is staying with my first company for eight years. Basically, inertia took hold. I was always being told how much I was valued by the company and what a great asset I was, and it was only when I finally made the move that I realised that I'd been woefully underpaid for years and that my career development had been severely stunted by staying in the same place for too long.

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#19 RE: career advice: is it recommended to work for multiple employers?
16/03/2008 21:59

Mickey to Expat (#18)

Similarly, I bitterly regret staying with my first company for 7 years - the last 3 were wasted. It wasn't all up to me as there were work permit issues, but even so I could / should have left a year sooner. I pretty much doubled my pay within the year, even though I was outside my comfort zone and stressed out in the new job. I left it after just over a year, but it was still worth it for breaking the mould.

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#20 RE: career advice: is it recommended to work for multiple employers?
16/03/2008 22:55

anon to Mickey (#19)

Mickey and Expat,

How did you guys present your pre-move salary to the hiring employer? Did you tell them the truth, stretch the truth, or block the question (or maybe it didn't come up...)?

Looks like adam went for option two, would be very interested to know the tactics you used.

Thanks

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