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Going back to work after a long absence

Courtney Littleton
Greenhorn

Joined: Mar 01, 2011
Posts: 2
I have been a stay at home mom for the past 8 years. I am now looking forward to going back to work as a java developer. Any suggestions on how to bridge my gap in employment? Would certifications help?
Thanks in advance.
Deepak Bala
Bartender

Joined: Feb 24, 2006
Posts: 6661
    
    5

Certification do help. Open source projects and freelancing are great ways you can get started. Freelancing jobs are especially great when you want to get short bursts of work for yourself and get a feel for what you want to do.

Lookup odesk and other freelancing sites out there


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arulk pillai
Author
Ranch Hand

Joined: May 31, 2007
Posts: 3220
Brush up on the fundamentals and practice with some tutorials.


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N Frey
Greenhorn

Joined: Jul 27, 2013
Posts: 3
Do people actually find freelance work that pays well enough? I have looked at the freelancing sites and most jobs pay less than $20/hr and expect quick turnaround. For someone who is home with the kids (i.e. stay at home mom trying to get experience) and has very little time to work on these assignments, how can they justify doing something for so little? That was my opinion. I would need to pay for a babysitter so that I could concentrate long enough to get the work done and I am in the same boat as Courtney (SAHM for 2.5 years) and am studying for my certification. I was thinking I might participate in an open source project, but I am concentrating on the certification first. I am wondering what you decided to do, Courtney.

Deepak Bala wrote:Certification do help. Open source projects and freelancing are great ways you can get started. Freelancing jobs are especially great when you want to get short bursts of work for yourself and get a feel for what you want to do.

Lookup odesk and other freelancing sites out there
Bear Bibeault
Author and ninkuma
Marshal

Joined: Jan 10, 2002
Posts: 61218
    
  66

You haven't said anything about your previous experience level.


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N Frey
Greenhorn

Joined: Jul 27, 2013
Posts: 3
I have 7.5 years of experience and had a Sr. Software Engineer title prior to staying home. Does that help? My babysitter would make $15/hr. I've seen jobs go for $10/hr. That is incredibly low.

Bear Bibeault wrote:You haven't said anything about your previous experience level.
Bear Bibeault
Author and ninkuma
Marshal

Joined: Jan 10, 2002
Posts: 61218
    
  66

My opinion is that those freelance sites are a joke. They're the lowest common denominator, competing to undercut each others. I'd not waste your time with them.

As you have a non-trivial amount of prior experience, that should count for something. Be sure to emphasize what you worked on, and the level of experience you gained before your hiatus. The biggest concern will be whether your skills have gotten stale (8 years is a long time in this industry), and (wrongly) concern over whether you'll just drop out of the workforce again.

Current certifications might help in your case to help prove that your knowledge is up to date, but in the US certifications don't usually count for much. Your case might be different, again, to show that you can pass modern exams.

I'd also be working on "home" projects that you can use to show off your skills.
Jeanne Boyarsky
internet detective
Marshal

Joined: May 26, 2003
Posts: 30537
    
150

Bear Bibeault wrote:I'd also be working on "home" projects that you can use to show off your skills.

Or 'home" projects that have a broader use. Does your child's school need anything that could be automated?


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Bear Bibeault
Author and ninkuma
Marshal

Joined: Jan 10, 2002
Posts: 61218
    
  66

Jeanne Boyarsky wrote:
Bear Bibeault wrote:I'd also be working on "home" projects that you can use to show off your skills.

Does your child's school need anything that could be automated?

Good suggestion. Or something that would help a charity that you support?
 
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