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I want to return to the software industry after a two year hiatus. I worked in my first role as an Android developer for three years, then in my next role also as an Android dev for ten months, at which point I completely burned out and stopped working. I did some small projects in the mean time, trying to keep up with changes in Android but ultimately stopped. It's been six months since I touched any code or opened an IDE and after a long process of recovery I feel like I am ready to get back to it. What advice can any of you offer for making this return?

EDIT

I am considering making a move to pure Java development if I can find an entry level position that will take me. Perhaps I should try to pick up a few Oracle certifications?

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You're going to be asked about the gap in your resume. If and when an employer says "What have you been doing for the past six months?" You should have a satisfactory answer prepared. They aren't trying to make you feel bad, but if you say "I got burnt out and quit," they will most likely want some valid reason to believe that you will not burn out on them and quit halfway through a project. Their chief concern is making sure that the work gets done; if they hire a person who will leave partway through, then they have to hire a new person who will have to figure out your old work before they can continue. It costs them time and money. You need to figure out how you'll convince them that you will not cost them either of those things.

I think a good answer is to avoid discussing the burnout. Talk about skills that you developed during that time off and that you focused on. They do not need to be computer-related. If you can demonstrate that during your hiatus you learned to handle project management better, or that you had some unlikely-to-repeat personal matter that you resolved (family matter that they can't really pry into) I think that would be a good reply.

I'm sure that they will also want to be sure that you're up to scratch on your coding. Take a few review classes if you need to. Dink around on HackerRank and up your score there a little bit.

I'd also interview with a few places you don't care that much about first. Go for some company that looks terrible, or that's too far away, and get your bad interviews out of the way. I'm sure that they'll ask you some questions that you're uncomfortable with or that I (and you) had not considered. This gives you the opportunity to stammer and give terrible answers without consequences. Then you can go home, brush it off because it wasn't a job you were seriously considering in the first place, and come up with a good answer for when you interview with a company you're more interested in.

As far as how you're going to proceed in your personal life-- I think it's important that you establish the social circles and steps that you're going to take to avoid burnout. It's important to have a life outside of work that extends beyond solitary activities and includes some form of exercise. Find a therapist that works for you, join a rec sports team, find a running club-- something to ensure that you have some form of social and physical interactions beyond work.

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I am returning to mobile development too, but I haven't stopped programming. I switched to backend development for 3 years and now coming back to iOS and Swift.

The reason why I have to come back to mobile just because contractor just finish his delivery and project run out of money

If I were you I would add some more skill for example you used to code in Java and now your would try Kotlin or even cool stuff like React Native or whatever that do cross platform

At this point you can explain to new employer about you missing gap that you were focusing on new technologies. Now you are controlling the conversation because he will ask you advantages and disadvantages between one and one another

Good luck

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  • I am considering migrating to Java development and looking for an entry level Java position.
    – Moses
    Dec 14 '19 at 10:05
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On top of other comments, I'd like to point another point you might need to concern. You got burned out before. You want to avoid this in the future. Since, you're a software developer, you can use Git Signals to catch while you're taking more than you'd like and be aware of what's going on.

This post has some useful signals you can use.

Note: I'm the founder of Haystack, providing insights and alerts for github teams.

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