Today we are looking at the question from Miguel, what is relevant resume information? “When the economy was bad I worked for two different employers outside my industry and the work I did was not relevant, should I include this on my resume?”
The answer to your question is yes. All career experience is relevant, even work performed outside your primary skills set.
Employers are less likely to look negatively on a candidate if you worked for some time in another industry or field. In fact, most employers today understand that staying too focused in just one skill can actually hurt your chances for career advancement. Showing that when times get tough, you found a way and found work even outside your industry. This shows your work ethic and value to an employer. You see, we cannot as employee’s control what happens within our industries. Companies do go out of business, the market demand can change, who knows what can happen.
The important factor here is… if you found employment with another company even outside of your field, then that company who hired you had a need which you had the skills to fill, and that is what a potential new employer most often will see positively.
So just because those tasks were outside your industry, they are still valuable skills you performed for that employer. Another factor is, leaving a large gap between employment, could cause an employer to question your professional capabilities or your demand in the market place. If you took time off between jobs, even due to a layoff or poor economic conditions, you may need to have a reasonable explanation as to why. And this doesn’t have to be work related.
If the market sucks, your industry dried up, whatever… And you decided to take a year off, live on savings, spend time with family, travel, explore your employment options, that’s all great
Not being employed is different from being unemployed.
So by showing an employer you worked during a time that was challenging to your industry, shows an employer what you did with your time. It also shows them your ability to be flexible, and the progression of your professional career.