Let's say that, after a STEM PhD, someone gets a postdoctoral position in academia. But after a few months of -productive- work, they realize that non-academic jobs would suit them better.

Will non-academic employers consider this as a red flag in a resume?

[Disclaimer 1: It might seem a duplicate of many other questions such as this Is it bad to switch jobs many times in a short period? But, in this case, it's not a matter of switching multiple jobs, but about having a short postdoctoral training period.]

[Disclaimer 2: inherited from https://academia.stackexchange.com/questions/93608/whats-the-shortest-acceptable-postdoc-length]

  • In many companies, all that matters is your experience and probably your age. Jul 25, 2017 at 4:50
  • 2
    I think the only risk is that an employer might think that a brief stint at anything means you aren't good at sticking at things (having a PhD seems a good counter) or getting along with others. Neither has much to do with being postdoc, and generally a single short stint wouldn't be seen as too negative - only if there were multiple, so it started looking like a pattern. Jul 25, 2017 at 5:17

1 Answer 1


Will non-academic employers consider this as a red flag in a resume?

I do not think so. Worst case is that company will not consider your post-doc experience as a 'real experience' and may not weigh that in during selection process.

However, lot of companies with good research focus (Where I assume you would want to go) may actually value post-doc experience. I knew lot of folks in my team who joined our industry research group after post-doc and did very well for themselves in career progression.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .