After I finished my CS school, I had an accident which took me far away from the industry for approximately 4 years. After that I worked on my dad's business, and I didn't do much in the way of programming.

I've done 3-4 websites in PHP (mostly for friends), and 2 Android Applications.

Everything I've done so far was trial and error. Now, I see technologies like TDD, pattern design and frameworks galore. Honestly, I think I've missed the bus.

The thing is , I was really enjoying and still enjoy programming but with my experience, I don't know what to put on my CV.

How do I put down Freelancing as an actual field of experience?

6 Answers 6


Well you cannot just put freelancing since it says nothing to your future employer.

Employers don't care whether you worked as a freelancer or in multimillion company. They care only how much you know and how much extra profit you can bring to his company.

Having this in mind, I would make a list of all project I did in 4 years, describing each technology I used with URLs of such project. This will mean more to your employer than zillion of sweet words.

When I employ someone for positions higher than junior L1, then I ask him/her to show me the list of all projects they took part in. In a matter of 1 hour or less, I can know how quality this person is.

Just a few days ago, I reviewed our new employer who showed me a list of 10 apps he did so far. After I reviewed them, I concluded that all these apps are easy or medium complexity and this person cannot get level higher than junior L2.

Don't be afraid of showing your works to your employers. Show them even your own projects, even if they are not yet published. The more you show, the more they will know of you and your qualities.

Good luck!


The pain train

I was in the same boat as you for a while; I had ample experience over a few years where I worked on open source projects and websites for small-scale clients.

The easiest way to actually have freelancing on your CV? Put it there as previous work, and have some of your clients be references. It's as simple as that. As for the question of "will employers see it as valuable?", well, just put it there. Give them examples they can look at.


You're a web developer, which makes it really really easy to show off your frontend skills. We're also at the point where pretty much any developer these days has a Bitbucket or Github account, so there's the backend stuff.

Stick the websites you've worked on in a portfolio, and specifically target potential clients or employers with this (you can probably cram the usual HR buzz words in there somewhere, too).

Be sure to link said portfolio gratuitously in your CV and covering letters, too (I put mine at the start and end of my CV, make it short and sweet, and let the client take a look for themselves if they're interested.)


This one is web development-specific, too.

If you intend to be working with a business on any kind of backend code as a programmer (not a designer), you should learn the methodology and way of thinking behind nearly every framework for web development: MVC. It's also known as separation of concerns, too.

If you understand MVC, you can grasp nearly any framework in about a day or two of playing around with it.


Long story short: just put it down as normal experience, and if you enjoy the work you do, do more of it (the only way to get better at programming is to do more programming, for example). Start small if you like, and build up notability and a strong reason to get a client or a job.


Unlink the projects you have worked in and your employment history.

Make two sections in your résumé:

  • Projects, This should include side projects and everything that you consider relevant evidences to prove your qualifications.
    List technical details, e.g. development tools and platforms you have used (and supposedly you're familiar with).
    Indicate your role and the most interesting activities you have participated in, regarding each project (expos, contests, whatever).
    It does not matter who's the project owner. You may simply skip the employer's company name, but be ready to provide with references when asked.

    My personal preference is to have this section just after the contact info, as it seems to be the most important to me.

  • Career, where all employers and formal positions (employment history) is recorded. You probably have this already.

Further reading from Workspace.SE:

  • 1
    I put my projects section directly after my contact info, just below the header. My resume is rather short, and pretty much says (in a nutshell) "Here's a few links, some contact info and a portfolio. Visit these if you want to hire me". It's great for getting job offers/clients that are actually serious and not just shopping around.
    – Amelia
    Commented Aug 15, 2013 at 23:56

In the context of listing company by company, and the dates worked for each company, I just put 'independent', itemizing my project work.

An example would look like this:

  1. Independent - March 2010 – Present
    • Project Management and Consultation
    • Created proposals, specifications and schedules for numerous clients Windows Development
    • Developed an Outlook extensions in c++ that provided ...
  2. Company X - July 2008 - March 2010
    • Developed Excel quantitative add-in used by stock traders
  • Welcome to F.SE Jahmic... a bit brief, but I guess that captures the essence of the question.
    – Andrew
    Commented Aug 12, 2013 at 12:35
  • @Andrew It's not a great answer, but it's an answer nonetheless (I'm withholding action since I've answered this).
    – Amelia
    Commented Aug 15, 2013 at 23:54

Give project details in your CV. Do not just put freelancing etc. Also write what have you exactly done for those projects. Or you can create your own website and put your resume there, like this - http://shirsendu.com/resumedas.pdf


Firstly, you mentioned your CV. That is an academic term and has specific meanings. But if what you are really asking about is a resume, then just make sure your resume reflects why you are the right person or company for the job. In other words, write your resume specifically to be that nice juicy worm with the hook inside.

If by freelancing you mean long-term projects then you can just put them in as normal employment during the period. They are not going to do an IRS audit on you.

As for your description of bouncing around from project to project during your typical day, any future employer is likely to think you will not give her project adequate attention.

Also, feel free to list yourself as a DBA... Say that for four years you have worked for AwesomeTech and have done ..what? List projects that might seem relevant to your prospective employer. Use your company name as an indicator that you are available for the next project.


  • 1
    CV or resume - two words to describe the same thing... over this side of the pond, CV is more prevalent (IME) whereas resume is more of an American term.
    – Andrew
    Commented Mar 28, 2016 at 11:17
  • Good point. But what does a freelancer need a CV for? Certainly a web presence that shows the various capabilities that can be brought to bear upon hiring the OP would be a start. But if this is for te purpose of quitting the freelancing in lieu of getting a normal job, then that would e off-topic here.
    – SDsolar
    Commented Jul 7, 2017 at 16:17

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