Should I mention freelancing experience on my resume when applying for a full time job? In particular, should I mention freelancing work done on sites like freelancer.com or elance.com?

I am freelancing as a PHP developer, which also includes several CMS's, but mainly Magento, Wordpress, Joomla, and Drupal.

Does this experience count? How should I mention it?

  • 2
    There seems to be two questions here, namely, "When do I know if it's a good idea to freelance full time" and "Is freelancing experience something I can put on my CV?" They both would probably be quite good questions in their own right and it probably would be a good idea to make two separate questions.
    – user152
    Sep 17, 2014 at 10:16
  • You should broad your question. I am not sure what you are asking and I think many others feel the same.
    – Peter MV
    Sep 17, 2014 at 10:19
  • I've closed this primarily because the question is simply asking "Should I move to a full-time job because of all of the competition?", and though we generally go a little easier on this rule than we should (It can be healthy for discussion when backed up with personal experiences and references), I'm not so sure that applies in this case. You could possibly edit your question and provide more information. Alternatively, you could stop by Freelancing Chat and ask!
    – Amelia
    Sep 17, 2014 at 11:23
  • I think, you got it wrong. I am just editing the question to be specific now.
    – dev
    Sep 17, 2014 at 18:37
  • 2
    Since you're responding to clarifying questions, I'll go ahead and reopen for answers. But would you mind also keeping an eye out for any additional questions potential answerers might have? This not only gets you the best answers but would also make this useful to future visitors too. Good luck!
    – jmort253
    Sep 18, 2014 at 7:13

3 Answers 3


Consider positioning yourself as a business owner/consultant vs. freelancer. You can create a section on your CV below your previous job or above it, depending on what is most current and is more impressive. Something like this:

"Your Name Consulting, 2004 - Present" Offers design and development work to a range of clients (you can be descriptive and specify things like non-profits, small-medium size businesses or event cite specific industries they touched like education and health care clients). I specialize in deploying CMS platforms that extend to Magento, Wordpress, Joomla, and Drupal

If you want to go the extra distance, you can build yourself a very simple portfolio site to showcase some of your work. It will give employers added credibility to see what you've shipped and the type of skills you possess.


I would mention it. I'd list it with work experience like all my other work history. I would not necessarily say "freelancer.com," but rather that I have X number of years experience dong Y type of development as an independent contractor (or self employed, or had my own part time business - whatever sounds best). Then list your duties.

The benefit to a potential employer is that your freelancing is that much more experience that you have. The potential drawback is that they might worry that your freelancing work will interfere with their full time position. So I would be prepared to explain how you've been challenged and learned XYZ doing it but how it never interferes with your day job.


Emily has a GREAT point.

Put the emphasis on the client and how well you've met the requirements; dates, company name, and technologies used. Do not use the word "freelance" ANYWHERE if you're looking for a full time position -- this implies risk for an employer because the concern will be that you're not devoting your entire brain to the job only. Use the word "contract" instead. Also, write more (in length) for your longer term projects, and skip projects of very short duration UNLESS they're very, very relevant.

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