On a job application, it asked why I left a job that I put on the job application. At this previous job, my boss was a good guy and we are on good terms, and he basically let me go because they didn't have the money to pay me. I asked him if I should just put "I left the job to look more full time work," and he said "Absolutely!" He was also one of my references.

I got the job I was applying for, but feel guilty about my reasoning for leaving the previous job. Looking back, I guess it was a lay off, but I was not under a contract with this company, and there's nothing in writing that states why I left.

I am looking for any feedback on my answer: should I have put "laid off," or does the answer I put work, considering my boss agreed that I should have put that I was "looking for more full time work"? There's nothing I can do to change what I put on the application now, but I am asking more for future job applications.

I could argue that I was looking for full time work, as this previous job paid so low and one month did not pay me at all, therefore I was behind a months pay for an entire year.

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    You were part-time in this previous job and wanted a full-time job instead, right? I don't see how you could characterize this as being laid off. Oct 11, 2018 at 2:39
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    @ShimonRura That the OP sought full time work after being fired doesn't change the fact that they were fired for financial reasons. That's a lay-off.
    – BSMP
    Oct 11, 2018 at 4:30
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    @BSMP: You are conflating terms there. Fired means one thing (there was a problem with the employee). Laid off means something completely different (there was a problem with the company). Neither apply here. The OP was simply let go (No contracted for continued employment). Oct 11, 2018 at 7:20
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    @MartinYork The OP said they weren't under a contract, not that they had a contract that wasn't renewed.
    – BSMP
    Oct 11, 2018 at 14:56
  • @BSMP: Exactly. They were let go. Oct 11, 2018 at 15:06

1 Answer 1


I don't see why you should trouble yourself with this.

It is the truth.
You apparently needed a better paying job and full time usually pays more than part time.
So you didn't lie and you have the former employer backing this.

Don't over think these things.
Move on. Soon nobody will even care about that job, let alone why you left.
It will be noting more than an item in a list of occupations showing your experience.

Also, keep in mind that "being laid off" may cast doubt on your abilities.
Telling a third party that your former company couldn't afford you would mean you're either too expensive or not experienced enough for your salary.
Further more it would actually be a breach of trust and could even get you into trouble for revealing private financial business data.
At the very least you'd lose your good standing with your former employer.


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