Length of experience on my profile
Thread poster: Whitney Maslak

Whitney Maslak
United States
Local time: 18:29
German to English
Mar 16, 2015

Hi, everyone. I'm sorry if I'm repeating a topic that's already been posted--I did a search and didn't find an answer to my question, so I'm starting a new post.

I was updating my profile and I'm not sure what to enter for the length of professional experience I've had in the industry. I've been translating professionally on a part-time basis since last May (it would probably amount to 7 months total experience). I also have about 4 years of professional experience with editing and proofreading.

I sort of feel like it would be wrong to say my length of professional experience is 4 years, because I haven't been translating that whole time. But if I said I started translating professionally in May 2014 would that be ok since it's just been on a part-time basis? I just wouldn't want someone to think I was being dishonest. Thanks, everyone!


ATIL KAYHAN  Identity Verified
Local time: 03:29
Member (2007)
Turkish to English
+ ...
The Road Mar 16, 2015

I strongly think that you should list those two pieces of experience separately on your profile (or resume for that matter). That way, you can specify the period (i.e. the length of the experience), the accomplishments (do not forget these!) and the skills if you would like to put them as well. Try to use action verbs.

It does not matter whether an experience was gained working part-time or full-time. I would not specify that at all. Also, it is OK if those two periods overlap. What the potential employers (or clients) will be looking for are the relevance of your experience, your acomplishments (or skills) and the total length of your experience. None of us came into this world with experience. We gain experience as we walk along this road.


Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:29
Member (2007)
+ ...
Just avoid outright dishonesty Mar 16, 2015

Whitney Maslak wrote:
I just wouldn't want someone to think I was being dishonest.

I think the fact that you're worried about it is enough. You'll clearly end up putting down something that you can justify. As said, the length of time is less important than its relevance. So having justification for whatever you put is the really important thing. If you've been translating "seriously" since May 2014, then I think that qualifies. What exactly defines full-time for a self-employed person, anyway? 30 hours? Less? 40 hours? More? Not doing anything else professionally?


Whitney Maslak
United States
Local time: 18:29
German to English
Thanks for the replies, Atil and Sheila. Mar 16, 2015

I started getting my first paid translation jobs in May, but I was still working full-time at my day job because I only was getting about 3 or 4 jobs a week. So I wasn't sure if that would still "count" if I said I started in May 2014. I've known people (in the translation industry and other industries too) who will, for example, get one job in May and then not get another job until October, but they say they've been translating since May. I think that's definitely stretching the truth, because you're implying that you've been gaining experience steadily from the time you started.


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