Staying at one job for a long time used to be considered positive — it showed dedication and loyalty. These days there can be such a thing as staying at a job for too long. Worse, this is now factor employers pay close attention to when reviewing applications.
Finding middle ground
It takes a great deal of time and money to attract, hire, and train a new employee. Employers want to ensure they hire someone who will generate a return on that investment both in terms of the years they invest in the company and the quality of their work. This is why, for some employers, judging the length of time a candidate stayed at their previous employment has become almost as important as what the candidate accomplished with those employers.
Answering the tough question
Expect to answer some tough questions if you’ve been at your current job for over five years. Expect to answer even tougher questions if you’ve not only been in the same job but in the same position for over five years. While not easy, this lack of career progress can be effectively explained away if, during your employment, you were also in school, you were dealing with a personal or family illness, or you were working on an impressive side project that is now complete.
Learn to become comfortable with change
Long job tenures can also indicate to employers that you’re uncomfortable with change. While this is the case with most people, it’s important to emphasize to employers that you’re the type of person who thrives in new environments. With this in mind, should you succeed in landing this new role, it’s important to remember that your current level of comfort will not transcend over into your new role. Areas you may have slacked in before due to your seniority will not be overlooked in a new position. Making a favourable impact on a new employer involves aiming to please and doing more than is expected.