Should I put an irrelevant job on a resume?

@maezee (36431)
United States
December 17, 2009 5:03pm CST
Here's another resume question I've been keeping bottled up: Here's the scenario: I'm thinking of applying for a position..At FedEx (yes, the shipping/courier company). I want to spruce up (and customize) my application a little bit to make it seem like I'm perfect for the job, and I think that only mentioning the RELEVANT skills and RELEVANT job experiences I have might be the perfect way to do this. I've worked at a dry cleaners, Macy's (department store), and a data entry company. I was thinking of omitting the dry cleaners and the data entry company because they have literally NOTHING to do with what I'd be doing at FedEx. Is this the wrong type of thinking? Should I include a job on my resume, even if the duties of the job are unrelated to those that I'd be doing at this new, prospective job? Do you think that prospective employers and interviewers are more interested that you've HAD a stable job in the past, or that you've had some relevant experience? Which do you think outweighs the other?
3 people like this
9 responses
@JoyfulOne (6242)
• United States
18 Dec 09
Just my opinion, but if you can find something from the other job that will benefit them, then it is not irrelevant. Like if it shows you are able to multi-task, or if you're good at organization, or that you're 'willing to do what needs to be done.' Also, if you were at the old job for any good amount of time, then that also shows a prospective employer that you are dependable and willing to stick with it. Personally, I never leave out a job that I held, because then it will come up 'what were you doing in that time period where you didn't work'. Then it might look like you were avoiding mentioning it because there was some kind of conceived problem you didn't want to mention. It might be irrelevant to you, but to an interviewer it is relevant. I think it's far better to mention whatever job it was, no matter what, because having an unaccountable period of time gap leaves them wondering 'why'. Good luck! My FedEx guy has been my deliverer for many, many years, and he just loves working for them.
1 person likes this
@cripfemme (7714)
• United States
29 Dec 09
It depends. Do you have other work experience or is this your only really long term employment? If yes, than put it. If no, then don't.
• United States
21 Dec 09
I think you should just because it will look nice. Why is it irrelevant? Well I'm not that smart so you should include it. Well yes, you had a good job then you will have a good job in the future! huh.
@artistry (4154)
• United States
18 Dec 09
...Hi maezee, If it were my resume, I would include all positions that I have held to make sure that there are no holes in my job history. Because if there are gaps, then you open yourself up for questions as to what you were doing at that point in time and you will have to answer verbally, easier to me to include than to exclude. I would concentrate on building up the experience and skills that pertain to the position you are applying for on your resume. I would also, I am sure you may know this, research everythimg I could about FedEx, where their most production branches are, what their most busiest time of the year would be, if they have foreign subsidiaries? Things that will let your interviewer know, as you as well ask questions of him or her, that you are acquainted with the company operations and you feel you could be a very good asset to such a mainstream company. Don't over talk but be aware of some of the key things about FedEx. Good luck.
• United States
18 Dec 09
What kind of position are you looking for at FedEX? I would say, generally, putting irrelevant job experience on your resume is a "don't" but since you don't have a ton of work experience it may be a good idea to put it there. If you spent a decent amount of time at these places it shows that you can commit to something. If any of these places had a high level of customer involvement, that shows you have customer service skills. If communication was important in any of these jobs, explain that and it becomes relevant. If you had to show leadership in any of these jobs, that makes it relevant. If you can think of any personality traits that are necessary for the Fed/Ex job that were used in another job, let them know that, and it is relevant. Many jobs can seem irrelevant at first but if you analyze it enough, you can make them relevant. Good luck!
@sublime03 (1810)
• Philippines
18 Dec 09
Yes, you should include for work experience. It does not matter that much to where you have started working for. They look on how long have you been working and what you can actually do in terms of flexibility. Not everybody can switch jobs and so it is nice to add it in as additional work experience.
@madteaparty (2761)
• Japan
18 Dec 09
Usually human resources people expect to see only relevant job experiences in your curriculum. It gives a better image to them, as they can focus on that. You can add non relevant job experience too, but they usually prefer the ones focused only in that kind of job.
@kaka135 (14149)
• Malaysia
18 Dec 09
Well, I would suggest you don't put any irrelevant job experience in your resume, unless you think the experience you gained from those jobs actually play a part of role in the job you are going to apply. In your resume, try to be more focus, write what the potential employer wants to read. They are looking at hundreds or thousands applications, so they might not find interest in reading some irrelevant or lengthy resume. It's only my suggestion. Good luck in your job application! ^_^
• United States
18 Dec 09
well if you've only had three jobs, you need to list them all. i'd say if you had other, more relevant jobs that you could omit them. but since those are your only options, you should put all three. it shows that you are capable of holding a job. good luck!!