After reading through a few "job hopping" related threads recently, I've been thinking how the opposite of job hopping can also be a problem.
I've known many people (especially in large, relatively sluggish companies) who got comfortable in a cushy and unchallenging role and stayed around for a very long time - say 10 or 15 years or even more. They might have moved around internally a little, but it was mostly a case of "one year of experience 15 times over" as seasoned hiring managers would say. Or to put it another way, they were "Special Projects" cases. Just sitting in a comfortable role where no more learning is going on, but that might look okay on paper (on their CV) if the various stuff they were involved with is embellished a bit.
What really got me thinking about this is that the longest role on my CV (almost 6 years) fits into this category somewhat, at least mildly. If I was being completely intellectually honest, I'd say I really only got 3 solid years of learning experience from it. The last 2-3 years were cushy maintenance mode. So I know first hand that it's quite possible than many "seniors" with 15 years experience (if they were in a job like that the whole time) might not be as broadly experienced and "senior" (in terms of having 15 years of quality experience) as they look on paper.
So my question is - does hanging around in the same job for very long raise any red flags? For example: if you see a CV which has only one 15 year job on it after college, as opposed to an equally experienced person who has several 4-5 year stints instead, does the single-job guy look like a possible "Special Projects" case for only having had one very long job? My experience suggests that it's quite likely. Or at least that the guy with several 5 year stints is probably more dynamic and adaptable, from having experienced a variety of roles, environments and technologies (and different uses even if using the same technologies across all jobs).
EDIT: Note that I am not personally worried that my history looks like this. My longest role above just serves as a mini example of what can happen with cushy long term roles, which got me thinking about this in general terms (If anything, my actual employment history (except for that longest role) leans more towards being a bit too job hoppy).