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How do employers look at contract work?

Hey there,

So I have recently graduated with a Marketing degree and have been struggling to find a full time position. However, I have been able to find various contract work as a Brand Ambassador, promoting and selling products. I was really wondering how employers look at this type of work. It definitely is very similar to sales except it doesn't involve commission most of the time. So the problem is a lot of employers are looking for 1 year experience or more in Marketing/Sales.

My question is if I have been doing the Brand Ambassador work for over a year would that be considered 1 year experience?

The problem why I find it difficult to prove is because this contract work usually lasts only like a weekend from about Wednesday to Sunday and I also have to find a new company each week. So on my resume, when describing my previous work experience I have multiple companies showing where I only worked for them for a few days, yet it is every week or so.

Anyone have an opinion on this?

Thanks in advance!



  • 3 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • Hey Kevin,

    Congratulations on your all your hard work in garnering that marketing degree! In regards to 'contract work' or 'freelance' do not think of it as bad thing, after all those jobs count as work experience regardless of their schedule. I have also stacked up a fair amount of freelance/temporary contract jobs since I've graduated, but that is the nature of most creative-type paths these days. This shouldn't hinder you in anyway - in fact it shows employers that you have many different experiences. They're not looking to see how many hours you put in per week at your old job, rather they want to know how you're going to use what you've learned to benefit them for a new job.

    If you're worried about padding your resume with too many of those short term jobs, just pick the ones where you applied the most relevant skills. This may mean you'll have to customize your resume/cover letter for every job you apply to, but you never know, it could pay off. You probably already know from working in marketing/sales, the key to success is all in the way you present and deliver. Never down play your previous experiences and what you've learned because of technicalities - if you feel that you are qualified for a certain job or if it offers you a route to use your experience and learn new ones, just go for it. It is up to you to articulate how your skills are transferable to new jobs.

    I hope this helps, and I wish you good luck on the job hunt!


  • Hey Victoria,

    Thanks for the response, that is very helpful. I totally agree it depends how I present it, it was just a concern because I was just wondering how they are looking at the resume, for example, and if it was helping me get to the interview point or they just didn't like the fact that I have had so many jobs.

    Do you know if I should point out that it is contract work I have been doing, which is why I have so many companies under my resume, or will they know?

    Hope to hear back from you when you get the chance,

    Thanks again for the helpful post!

  • Hey Kevin,

    I would definitely count this a year of work experience.

    I can see this cramming up your resume, as you had mentioned there is a long list of companies you have worked for. Don't worry, employers seeking something with experience like yours will view this as adaptability and most likely make you a valuable asset to them!

    To make sure this information is easily digested by the hiree, I would just create a separate page for the list of companies you've worked with, maybe categorizing them as well based on the type of business they are and maybe the different types of skills you learned from them, and then attach it to the back of your resume. From there you can just add something like: (See last page for more details) onto the main portion of your resume where you state your Brand Ambassador work experience. I might format this main part as something like: "Brand Ambassador - 50+ Placements including 10+ Fortune 500 Companies (See final page for more details)." Don't include that some were 3 day placements unless they ask. Just state, somehow, that all of these experiences were spread throughout one year of work.

    To answer your question of whether or not employers are seeking this type of work experience, I would say that it's not a yes or no type of question. If a company is looking for someone to fill a more freelance-style position where you're not monitored so frequently and are working independently, then this experience could be very very valuable to them! Take Personal Trainers, for example. They typically have to find clients, promote themselves, retain clients, generate their own programs, and more, entirely on their own. Yet, it is a "job" position at most gyms where people need to go through the usual recruitment process. The gym would love knowing that their new PT has experience running their own gig!

    Just highlight your strengths! Adaptability, Sales, Independent, Discipline, are all great examples of skills and traits you would either earn or develop in your experience as a Brand Ambassador.

    Best of luck with the job hunt :)


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