The Years of Experience Conundrum
You go to apply for an instructional design position. The job announcement states the candidate must have x amount of years of experience. This can feel frustrating when you are fresh out of college without a ton of experience. What do you do if you don’t have enough YOE? What counts for YOE? If you still fall short, how can you still sell yourself?
What do you do if you don’t have enough YOE?
- Mention exactly how many years you DO have. Every candidate has a different number of years, skills, salary requirements, etc. Always apply and try. For example: Instructional Designer with 2 years of experience, seeking….
- If you did just graduate from college, and have been applying around, not hearing back for a while, go back to your college for feedback, advice, contacts, an internship, anything. Especially if you graduated in ISD. Many college campuses have career centers. Go. Hound them.
- Apprentice. Find an ID in the field and ask to apprentice. Ask for old project samples, instructions, shadowing opportunities, mentorship, etc. This is an investment of time that will accumulate and work to your advantage.
What counts for YOE?
- Add projects from college/training into your YOE, IF they relate. If you took coursework in ID and have pieces in your portfolio, then add that to your timeline. You invested in learning and applying theory, methods, processes, and have a final product. That took time. Include it. Many people segue into ID from other fields. If you have ISD knowledge + experience, it counts! For example, Professional Development: 2 months of training in Adobe Captivate; 2 months of Vyond animation development
If you still fall short, how can you still sell yourself?
- Offset YOE with your mad skills. You know authoring tools so well you draw icons in your sleep. You have a certificate in Captivate, and portfolio pieces galore. Instead of placing skills on the bottom of your resume, elevate that section above work experience so employers scan this first. They’re more apt to call you if they know you are ready to apply newly learned skills. If you don’t have enough YOE, especially, then learning the latest tech tools can up your chances for hire.
Check out the recording to hear the full discussion!