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Should I Put Years on My Resume When I'm a More Advanced Age?

by Deb
(United States)

I am in the market for new employment. Some years ago when in the same situation, the workforce center I was working with at the time recommended for those of us that were getting older (e.g. over 40), not to include specific graduation years on your resume.

They also recommended not to go back in job history beyond 10-15 years or so, because this could open up potential age discrimination. I am doing this on my own this time and am wondering if this would still be recommended?

I have a lot of experience to present, but not at the expense of being overlooked due to someone thinking I'm "too old".

ANSWER: Deb... This is a thorny issue. Legally, employers aren't allowed to discriminate based on age, but of course, some do. It sounds like a good idea to leave the dates off, but you're right... people who opt to do so usually choose that path precisely because they ARE older. So, I'm not sure you gain anything by doing that.

As far as how many years of employment to show, most experts recommend about 10. Another rule of thumb is to keep your resume to no more than 2 pages. But each situation is different and I think you have to take an individual approach.

What you want your resume to do is "sell" you and your abilities. So focus it on the education and experience that will do that for you.

In the end, would you really want to work for an employer who judges candidates based on age, rather than on their merits and experience?

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