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I quit my previous job earlier this year because I got a freelance job which was paying much higher and had flexible work hours. I was able to travel a lot during these 4 months and also worked on a couple of long due personal projects during free time. Now that I am done with the freelance job, I want to start looking for a full-time job again. Now my question is, when employers ask me about this gap, what should I tell them? Should I be honest and tell them that I quit my full-time job for a higher paying part-time one? Wouldn't that give the impression that I am only bothered about making money and may quit this new job too if I get another high paying freelance job? Or should I say that I quit due to some personal reasons like to take care of an ill relative or simply to take a break from routine work life? Would that seem like an obvious lie and even make them think that I was fired from my previous job?

I would also be launching one of the personal projects I worked on during this gap on Play Store within the end of this month. The other project is for personal use only and won't be released anywhere.

Note that the domain of work of the freelance job is the same as the previous job and the jobs I would be applying for in the future. But it does not have a work experience certificate from the client.

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    Possible duplicate of Handling a Gap in Your Résumé (Travel experience) – gnat May 14 at 14:27
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    @gnat Sorry to ask - but why'd you think this as a "gap"? – Sourav Ghosh May 14 at 14:55
  • You're overthinking this, if you're asked about this just say you didn't want to work for 4 months and it's the end of it you don't need to explain any further – user86742 May 14 at 16:42
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First of all, there is no "gap", this is pretty straightforward scenario.

You got a better job opportunity (money as well as other benefits, ex - flexible work hours) as a freelancer - you took that. Now you want to get back to a full-time position. Everything is normal.

You can also showcase your expertise gained in the freelancing work as it is in related technology / field. In case the proof of work is needed, and your latest employer did not give you a work experience certificate, you can ask for one, or produce (part of) the contract and the final relieving / closure letter (as applicable).

That said,

Wouldn't that give the impression that I am only bothered about making money and may quit this new job too if I get another high paying freelance job?

Whether someone was a freelancer or not, this is always a possibility. A freelancer is not any different than a full time employee switching to another full-time job, in this regard. Not to worry too much about it.

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    It should also be mentioned that this freelancing gig should be on the OPs resume/CV, as long as it's career related. This way there really is no gap. Then following along your advice is exactly on point. – computercarguy May 14 at 19:38
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    I am glad that most answers and comments don't see this as a "gap" or that big an issue. The lack of work experience certificate was also worrying me but I think your answer has the solution to it. – anikul May 15 at 6:11
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Never lie. That is rule #1.

But you also don't need to tell them you did it for the money. it seems you did a few things during the gap:
1. freelance work. You enjoyed the flexibility.
2. travel. You broadened your horizons and met a lot of interesting people.
3. Developed some personal tools, showing a deep interest in things you are passionate about
4. Published an app (semi) commercially.

That is a full and rather impressive four months, filled with things that are worthwile goals in and of themselves. Focus on those things, and if they ask about how you financed this break you can mention how well-paid the freelance job was.

  • Trying to keep the money part out of it and focusing on other points is good advice. – anikul May 15 at 6:12
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It seems like there are two questions here: A) How do you handle moving from the full-time job to the part-time one, and B) How do you account for a 3-4 month gap in your work history.

A) You mention that you moved over for higher pay and better hours. I would think anyone would do that. You may have been underpaid at the full-time job or simply interested in learning about new problems to solve that the part-time one offered. I am sure there is something (tech, benefits like hours, subject matter) of the part-time job that were more interesting to you than the old one. Every hiring manager is also an employee that has changed jobs for reasons more trivial than what you are describing.

B) There is no need to try to make anything up. I understand the concern, though. It seems to me that you were able to work on new technology and subject matter that you wanted to learn about that you couldn't explore in your other positions. Therefore it seems you took the initiative to learn these new things on your own. Now that you have this experience in building an app from scratch without any team behind you, you most likely have a greater appreciation of how to work as a valuable team member.

I wish you the best of luck with your job search.

  • Yes, working independently has improved my technical skills and made me significantly more confident about my abilities in my domain of work. Thanks! – anikul May 15 at 6:17
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Honesty is the best policy.

You can say you chose to do freelancing so you would have more spare time to work on personal projects and travel a bit (not a lie). Then you have completed your personal projects so you are looking to go back into full time employment.

  • I quit my previous job earlier this year because I got a freelance job which was paying much higher and had flexible work hours - so it was no motivated by freelancing and travel. – Sourav Ghosh May 14 at 14:07
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Now my question is, when employers ask me about this gap, what should I tell them?

You certainly should not lie, but you're not required to give them any details about this period of time, either. None of those details are relevant or pertinent to them hiring you.

You were freelancing and working for yourself. You don't need to give them any details about your reason for it, how much work you were doing, how much you were making, etc., etc.

"I was working as a freelancer during that period of time."

  • "None of those details are relevant or pertinent to them hiring you." But what if it is relevant? The OP should still tell an interviewer about the basic information of the job they did, just as they would with any other job. Keeping "secrets" should only be for personal information and IP of they companies they worked for. – computercarguy May 14 at 19:45
  • Sure. The OP can tell them what kind of work he did, but he doesn't need to disclose how much he made, how many hours he worked, why he did freelancing, etc. He shouldn't lie about it but he doesn't need to disclose it in the first place. – joeqwerty May 14 at 20:06

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