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I started my career as a Software Engineer back in February 2018. As of today, my experience is almost 1 year 8 months. In January I switched jobs (without any break between), but most of my time was free. I applied to other jobs and by the end of January I got another job.

Note: Before taking the second job I discussed it with my first employer and he had no issues.

So I've been working full time with two separate companies (i.e 80 hours a week) since January. Can my experience since January be counted as 18 months?

Recently I've been called for an interview and the job description asks for 2+ years of experience. I'm not sure if I should say that I have 2+ years or less than 2 years experience. Would it be inappropriate to say I have 2+ years of experience?

I'd like to resign from the other 2 jobs and get a single, better job.

P.S: I can get Salary Slips and Experience letters from both of my companies.

Edit:

Both of my jobs are in the same field.

marked as duplicate by gnat, Bilkokuya, Gregory Currie, MonkeyZeus, Time4Tea Sep 27 at 18:00

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    Question: If you'd have done (paid or unpaid) overtime in a single company for the same amount of hours you mentioned, would you consider them as extended work experience? – Sourav Ghosh Sep 27 at 6:46
  • @SouravGhosh I might not, and maybe this thought wouldn't have came to my mind. – Saleh Mahmood Sep 27 at 6:50
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    As a side note: do not try to sell the "double time" thing to an hiring manager because any slightly experienced one will automatically tag you as "junior" just because you think it. Even working two jobs is to be explained carefully: your mind might not feel the stress but your body does and an employer wants you at your best for HER company. Any decent manager knows how important work-life balance is. All that said...1 year and 8 months vs 2 years? It probably doesn't matter at all. – Adriano Repetti Sep 27 at 7:03
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    @SalehMahmood then you'll have no outlet and your passion will become just another chore. Working 80h a week means you either work 16h/day 5 days/week or just short of 12h/day all 7 days of the week, leaving almost no room for basic maintenance activities (eating / sleeping) or leisure. DO NOT DO THIS. Hear it from all of us in the comments: this is dangerous to your physical and mental health. – Juliana Karasawa Souza Sep 27 at 9:47
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Does doing double job counts as double experience?

TL;DR - No.

To elaborate, in most of the cases, the required year of experience is required to measure the exposure of someone into different phases / scopes / activities / responsibilities of the job, not only the amount of time spend doing the same thing.

For example, a software / IT professional with 5-8 years of experience will have exposure to / knowledge of a complete development life-cycle, the product architecture and integration points for the product. On the other hand, someone working in the same program, for a year or less, might have the technical knowledge of the module they're working on, but will lack the overall visibility (or vision) for that product. Over time, someone is not only expected to gain the technical knowledge, but also acquire the domain / business knowledge associated with the product / platform.

In other words, it's not only about how you write code, it's actually more about why you write code.

Echoing what Adriano mentioned in the comment: experience is not just about the QUANTITY but the different scenarios and different moments of software life cycle you encounter over a sufficient amount of time. It's about the problems you face and the long term impact of your decisions.

Thereby, do not try to use the time as your only achievement, rather try to showcase your knowledge and expertise, that will be giving you positive edge. Best of luck.

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    Also working two jobs like this is bit sketchy some countries like India flat out ban it and many other employers also don't allow it if its close to your day job (playing gigs in the evening as a musician would be ok for example) – Neuromancer Sep 27 at 23:56
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I don't think there's a right or wrong here. I'd certainly apply for the job and in the application make sure they know that your company OK'd you working two places at once.

Just list your jobs as they are and don't list a "accumulated work experience", then they can make the decision of how they want it to count.

Keep in mind that 2+ years usually doesn't mean that literally, but is a ballpark of experience they want you to have, so I don't think they'll throw you right out the window.

  • Thanks for your opinion. – Saleh Mahmood Sep 27 at 6:16
  • also what exactly do you mean by 'accumulated work experience' – Saleh Mahmood Sep 27 at 6:17
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    "accumulated work experience" means a summary of total work experience. ie. total work experience – Sander Skovgaard Hansen Sep 27 at 6:19
  • +1 Total time in industry != hours per day * days. More hours is only better if it means more learning. Hour in a meeting != hour learning a new tool. xkcd.com/519 – aidan.plenert.macdonald Sep 27 at 16:20
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A note as a person involved in the recruitment process looking for people who make their passion their profession.

At our company, we count experience in years. A year (usually) has 365 days. Each day has 24 hours. We assume one year's experience means that someone slept 8 hours a day and worked full time during the remaining 16 hours, for 365 days. This is the default (in our assumption). If in reality you put more, you're at a loss. If you put less, you're at a gain.

BUT

If it were up to me, I personally would prefer to see a person doing their work for 8 hours, and for the remaining 8 doing their normal life WHILE thinking (in a healthy manner) about work. You need time to unwind to process everything that has happened during work hours. Read a book, watch a movie, read answers on StackExchange.

If you don't give yourself that time, you're depriving yourself from the ability to step away, have time to look at things from different perspective and/or allow other people to give their input. Recruiters will see that. The best outcome is they just ignore your resume (because working like that means you don't have time to unwind which means you come tired to work the next day, which means you are not an effective worker). The worst outcome is that recruiter will hire you just to milk you for that 80 hours. Because they will see that you are willing to do it.

Bottom line: You don't have 2 years experience.

  • @JoeStrazzere that's every company assumption. They don't consider a person outside their work. Company as an entity don't care if you work part time for a year or do overtime on regulars days. They always assume there is "work" you and "sleep" you. When you cannot work because you sleep. that's why we have deaths from overworking or exhaustion. If you have two jobs with 12 hour shift each job assume you sleep in those "other" 12 hours. I, personally, assume (and hope) people think about their work in their spare time in the meaning of rising their own abilities, resting (or even complaining). – SZCZERZO KŁY Sep 27 at 10:57
  • @JoeStrazzere I've never worked outside of the U.S. but in heavily populated (1 billion+ people) countries it may very well be a fact of life that there is such a surplus of people that companies only consider hiring candidates that work themselves to death. This article is for Japan but I assume the problem is worse in other countries. forbes.com/sites/adelsteinjake/2017/10/30/… – MonkeyZeus Sep 27 at 15:02
  • @JoeStrazzere Sorry for any confusion, I do not endorse "that's every company assumption" but if that's the only work culture known by a person (OP of this answer) then I can see why they falsely apply it on a global scale. Either that or this person is a business owner and is trying to subtly propagate this culture for their short-sighted benefit. I've known plenty of small business owners who think their employees should all work themselves like crazy for meager pay. – MonkeyZeus Sep 27 at 15:06
  • This. In the software industry, the kind of experience that translates into increased productivity is not measured in hours worked, but in those "aha" moments you have in the middle of the night. The rate at which you gain that kind of experience does not increase when you push yourself harder. If anything, it rapidly declines. – No U Sep 27 at 17:15
  • Pakistan seems to have a somewhat weak 40 hour work week (aka 5 or 6 days depending upon region) that would make the year between 260 and 313 work days. – jmoreno Sep 28 at 1:55

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