At What Age Do People Switch Jobs (This Will Tell You) …

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Insight & Opinion

At what age do people changes jobs

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Keen to understand the age at which people decide to switch jobs and careers, Data Scientist Nathan Yau crunched the numbers from more than 110k people who changed jobs between the years 2011 and 2018. His discoveries have highlighted that time changes both our career options and the career choices we make.

When are people most likely to switch jobs…

Arranging the data into a timeline which was sorted by age, Nathan segmented the data into the 100 most common job types.

In our teenage years and early twenties it appears we’re still trying to figure out what we want to do when we grow up. Many of the paths taken are those we would associate with unskilled and flexible working environments, making them ideal openings for the first job market.

As we build experience into our twenties we progress into more established career paths and find our calling. As expected the twenties is when most activity happens.

As we get older, we start to settle into a career and move less, however there are still changes amongst careers that require physical activity, labourers, farm workers and the like.

The most interesting statistic relates to those people still working and changing careers beyond the retirement age, this is likely to relate to those giving up full time employment but still needing a regular income.


The data for 2011 through 2018 comes from the Current Population Survey, which is run by the Census Bureau and the Bureau of Labor Statistics. I downloaded the data via IPUMS.

Taking an overview of the data you get a similar pattern of switch rates

What age people switch jobs UK

Nathan Yau writes for Flowing Data, has a PhD in Statistics from UCLA and produces work focused around Data for non-professionals, Information design and Self-surveillance.

Follow him on Twitter here.