Is it ok to send a resume for a position when I have half the working experience the position requires, although I believe I could be a good fit? I understand if I don't get a call back, but would it harm any future attempts for other positions in the same company?


I wanted to keep this general, but it's true that it differs greatly as years increase. For me is 3 years on the ad with 1.5 actual experience + some projects I did while being an undergrad (if I can sell that).

  • You are right. The two questions are almost similar. I say almost because I wanted to know if by applying it would harm any future attempts. The question you mention lacks that part. Thank you for the heads up though. I was able to find some good info on that thread too. Commented Aug 11, 2014 at 12:06

5 Answers 5


Absolutely! Many managers will create job descriptions for roles on their team which reflects the perfect candidate. What they actually get is about half of what they want. So, if you like the position, and are technically qualified, send a resume, follow up, and let your positive exuberance be the reason you get the job.

  • 6
    "I would like to be considered for" is a phrase I like in this situation
    – Liath
    Commented Aug 11, 2014 at 8:21

Please tell us the exact years of experience required. Half or percentage does not give an accurate picture. Eg. Job = 2, you = 1. No problem you can try. Job = 10 years, you = 5. Maybe don't apply.

If its the former case, then I suggest that you request the employer to consider you for the job. I'd say it like this in my cover letter:


I am applying for the position of scarecrow at boltok farms. I have xyz skills and I did abc challenging projects. I am very eager to work in this role because...

I know that the position requires 3 years of exp, but I have only 1.5. I was wondering if you could still consider my application for the position. If there is a possibilty, then can we setup a phone call to discuss the position futher ?

Thank you for your time and consideration. I look forward to your reply.


  • 11
    I do not think there is any reason to be so wordy. When I read this letter, I am already considering your application for the position - no need to ask. Just list our requirements and your requirements in a tabular format. I will scan it and determine if 1.5 is close enough. There is no need to highlight the deficiency. If I am not already aware of the 3 year requirement, that probably means it is not important.
    – emory
    Commented Aug 10, 2014 at 20:01
  • Good point. Please see my update. +1 Commented Aug 10, 2014 at 20:47
  • @emory - i agree with not highlighting the "deficiency" of years, but tabular format alone is not good. I want to see the evidence to back up your assessment of skills - if I just see a table of skills, and then no mention under a job or project, then I'm going to assume you're just keyword matching.
    – HorusKol
    Commented Aug 10, 2014 at 23:47
  • I wouldn't shorten experience to exp, in my opinion it looks sloppy
    – Tim B
    Commented Aug 11, 2014 at 10:02

If you honestly are capable of doing the work, then by all means submit an application, and I would recommend directly addressing the fact that you don't meet the minimum experience, something that gets across the points below.

I acknowledge that I do not meet the minimum years required, however, my experience is particularly relevant, I am very interested in the subject matter, and am hard working/a quick learner so will be able to handle the work. I am willing to be flexible on salary in accordance with my limited years of experience.

If you don't directly address it, it looks like you either didn't read the job description properly (application goes in the bin), or are just one of those people who puts in applications for everything (again, bin)

If you do address it, you can make it sound like you really want this particularly sort of job, which is why you are applying. You can present yourself as someone who is capable of getting the job done cheaper than those who meet the criteria.



The ad should also be specifying a list of core skills, and maybe some other optional skills.

Do you cover all (or almost all - maybe missing at most one on a list of 6-10?) the core skills? Do you think that you can demonstrate that you would have as much ability in those core areas as someone with that extra time in industry?

If so - submit your resume, with a cover letter detailing how you match the skillset they're looking for (do not say "I realise I don't have the required experience, but" - simply say "I complete projects using skills X, Y and Z, and have strong experience in A, B, C").

  • There are some core skills and I cover them all except one. But the one is a little uncommon. It's a relatively new technology that even applicants with 5 years might not be familiar with. And actually that's one of the reasons I want the job. To gain experience, even expertise, on that particular technology. Commented Aug 11, 2014 at 9:05

I think it is perfectly fine, that is how i got my first career defining job. After 6 month of relevant experience, I landed a job in big company just like you described. I sent my resume to a vacancy which stated that required experience was from 2 to 3 years. I got the call and showed that I knew some things needed for the position and got the job.

So if you are good and willing to go the extra mile to learn something new and what is needed for company you are applying for, than why not. Most of the time the experience factor is to scare off inexperienced developers who are not sure about their skills. Because most of the time they need someone who can do the job and willing to learn something new to do it even better, not someone who have done something similar for few years and claims that he have the experience but can't do anything. This may not be the true for higher ranked positions, like managers or directors.

but would it harm any future attempts for other positions in the same company?

That depends what you actually tell about yourself, if its all true and you are competent, and did not get the job I really doubt that it can somehow impact applying for others jobs in that company. If you don't get the job, that does not mean that you are doomed. That means you did not get the job, that all. It completely different case if you mess up an interview badly, than it actually can impact further applications in that company.

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