Take the 2-minute tour ×
Programmers Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for professional programmers interested in conceptual questions about software development. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I think I have good enough reputation on SO now. Well, this may not be that much as compared to so many other users out there but I am happy with mine.

So, I was thinking of adding my profile link on my résumé - just the profile link and not that "I have this much reputation on SO". Those who haven't seen, can see this question Would you put your stackoverflow profile link on your CV / Resume?

How would this look like?

Forums/Blogs/Miscellaneous others

No blogging as yet but active participant in Stackoverflow. My profile link - http://stackoverflow.com/users/userId/username

I think of putting this section after Project Details and Technical Expertise sections. Any tips/advice?

Update

MKO has made a very good point -

do you really want a potential employer to be able to evaluate in detail everything you've ever written on SO

I thought of commenting but it would be too long -
In my questions/answers I put a lot of statements like - "AFAIK ...", "following are my assumptions so far ...", "am I correct to conclude that... ?", "I doubt if it is possible to ..." etc. when I am not sure about something and I rarely involve in fights with other users. However I do argue on topics sometimes if I feel it is necessary and if I have a valid point. I do accept my mistakes and apologize for the same. As we all know nobody is perfect. I must have written many things which may be judged as wrong by a potential employer. But what if the same employer notices that I have improved in the quality of content by comparing old content with new one? Isn't that great?

I also try to go back to older questions/answers and put corrective comments etc. when I feel I was wrong or if I can improve my post.

Of course there are many employers who want you (potential employees) to be correct each and every time. They immediately remove you from consideration when you say a single incorrect thing. I have personally met such an interviewer few months back. He didn't even care to listen to any good thing I had done after he found a single wrong thing.

Now the question is do you really care to work with such people? Or do you like those people who give value to the fact that you are striving to improve every day. I personally prefer the latter.

share

locked by Thomas Owens Sep 22 at 13:32

This question exists because it has historical significance, but it is not considered a good, on-topic question for this site, so please do not use it as evidence that you can ask similar questions here. This question and its answers are frozen and cannot be changed. More info: help center.

closed as off-topic by Jim G., MichaelT, Kilian Foth, GlenH7, thorsten müller Jan 14 at 9:10

  • This question does not appear to be about software development within the scope defined in the help center.
If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

16  
I wouldn't really say that's enough rep to be seriously proud of, let alone put on a resume. –  sevenseacat Jan 21 '11 at 8:22
30  
Mention you are actively participating to SO, it's enough. They will eventually ask your account name if they are really interested in that. –  user2567 Jan 21 '11 at 8:59
15  
Even if you are having a (relatively) low reputation, a recruiter would be interested to know that the candidate is motivated enough to learn and grow, and is not a programmer only by chance or accident. The content of the answers/questions would also be interesting to judge english proficiency, communication skills, interaction with peers, etc. –  Xavier T. Jan 21 '11 at 9:00
15  
There is a balance to strike with site reputation for something like SO ( or here, for that matter ) in that if it's too high prospective employers may infer you spend half your time on SO when you should be working... –  glenatron Jan 21 '11 at 10:50
6  
Sigh, this is why I dislike the rep system, people get harshly judged just by a number. @Karpie @Thorbjørn Disagree, I see a lot of accepted answers in his profile. I don't have time to look at his Q's and A's in depth to judge his skill level (I would if I was deciding whether to hire him) but he clearly knows something. –  James Mar 29 '11 at 12:26

14 Answers 14

Your participation in Stack Overflow (or indeed any Stack Exchange site) should come under your "interests". Yes, it is related to your work, but it's not your work (unless you happen to be employed by Stack Exchange).

If you do decide to put your SO profile on your CV then it would be a good idea to make sure that:

  • Your profile picture is set to a photo of you.
  • You use your real name.
  • Your profile bio is up-to-date and to the point.
  • Your questions and answers are spell-checked and grammatically correct.

You are using SO as a tool to sell yourself, so you must be professional on the site.

share
8  
@Chris great answer. completely agree –  Sandeepan Nath Jan 22 '11 at 10:32
1  
@Chris - I correct myself. this would be one of the best answers to something like "What are the things one needs to take care of about the Stackoverflow profile before mentioning it in the résumé?" –  Sandeepan Nath Jan 27 '11 at 7:01
1  
@Sandeepan - True ;) but often you need to answer the unasked or implied question. –  ChrisF Jan 27 '11 at 9:12
1  
-1 This Does not answer the question Where and how to mention Stackoverflow participation in the résumé? –  Aditya P Mar 15 '11 at 16:15
1  
@AdityaGameProgrammer - down-votes are a fact of life on Stack Exchange. I do try to avoid them, but sometimes they are inevitable. –  ChrisF Mar 15 '11 at 16:44

I wouldn't

I'd find it a bit juvenile if I found something like that on a resume. Also, do you really want a potential employeer to be able to evaluate in detail everything you've ever written on SO? Chances are that you've at least said something he might disagree with.

share
    
please read my update –  Sandeepan Nath Jan 21 '11 at 9:53
27  
I agree with Sandeepan Nath. If a potential employer has a problem with something I said on SO I probably wouldn't want to work for them anyway. So this might actually help you weeding out any employers who don't value the fact that you're trying to contribute and help others. –  Anne Schuessler Jan 27 '11 at 8:42
    
I knew many would agree to this. Thanks @Anne Schuessler. –  Sandeepan Nath Jan 28 '11 at 7:07
4  
I also disagree with this answer. Employers value engagement in relevant communities. And if something is matter of opinion, then fact that potential employer disagrees with that doesn't matter, good employers value people who have their own opinions. –  vartec Apr 11 '12 at 12:20
1  
Isn't it more juvenile to use the sites and hide that information because you are embarrassed about what you have done –  NimChimpsky Jun 28 '13 at 10:24

Personally I'd only include a link to my personal web page (which has a nice big "SO flair" thingie on it) but I've had a few arguments with a friend over this some time back (he is a fan of listing such things). He recommends a dedicated section at the top of the CV with the links Tiny URL'ed (ideally with a custom service if you have a small enough domain).

Communities
Single short line saying you are active on the web.

Stackoverflow    http://mlk.invalid/stackoverflow
JDC              http://mlk.invalid/JDC
share
4  
I did the same thing on my last CV. I linked to my personal blog which has a link to my SO profile. I figure if an employer actually cares for these things they will find it. If not, no harm done. So, I do offer a very easy way to find me on SO, while not directly linking to it. –  Anne Schuessler Jan 27 '11 at 8:45
2  
+1 the first answer i read that actually answer the question !! –  Newtopian Mar 30 '11 at 16:35
    
One problem with those tiny urls is that they hide your username. –  CodesInChaos Sep 22 at 9:15

Whether you put it or not... chances are they'll find it.

Employers now use Google to find out more about the candidates they are interested in. Type the name in Google, and look through the results:

  • Facebook profile
  • Blog (if any)
  • Forums (if real name was used)
  • Left-overs

It's amazing the number of details about our life that one can find on the Internet (which is the very reason why there is only my initial here, and not my surname).

I think that mentioning your participation is sufficient, though I would not actually put the full url in clear (it bloats the text) but perhaps provide it as hyperlinks, like so:

Participate in online communities: StackOverflow, Programmers.StackExchange...

If they use the printed form, they just see the text, and on a computer, they're a click away from the page if they wish to.

Note: Typing "Matthieu M" on Google yields my SO profile at the 5th item on my computer... and that's because there is Matthieu Chedid, whose scene name is M, that take up the 4 first places. Google is scary ;)

share
2  
Thank goodness I have a super common name then ;) –  Mercfh Mar 15 '11 at 16:22
    
Please! Facebook profile (if any) :) –  Nemanja Trifunovic Mar 15 '11 at 16:42
    
If you avoid use of any part of your real name and avoid identifying references to any projects you've worked on or companies you work for, or other forum names you use, how exactly are they going to find you? –  user21007 Mar 31 '11 at 1:28
    
@user21007: because I used links ? ie they can find about me only what I accept to show them. (or so I try) But I guess we Europeans are a bit more preoccupied by privacy :) –  Matthieu M. Mar 31 '11 at 6:14

Where and how to mention Stackoverflow participation in the résumé?

Primarily because these activities do not come under mainstream resume sections you could list them under

Extra curricular Activities section

  • For instance Along with any teaching that you do on weekends.
  • These sort of activities come under the type "Giving back to the community"

Hobbies and Interests section

  • As these are more inclined towards personal development.
  • These would be mentioned on the resume only when they hold relevance in enhancing your overall image as a better developer for the position.
  • Like learn new programming languages

Online Portfolio section

  • You would provide links code samples,examples on say your technical blog or such
  • links to your opensource projects.
  • Hence links to SO profile which showcases your knowledge over the technical issues in your skill set.( provided as the OP hints the profile is clean and marketable)

Professional Affiliations Section

  • Along with memberships to Professional groups , Communities ,Associations
  • SO is essentially a professional community.
share
1  
+1 for the professional affiliations section (which is where such a reference truly belongs) –  Joel Etherton Apr 4 '11 at 11:37

In your extracurricular activities section

If you have such section, otherwise don't bother. Also, I think providing such information is not always a good idea, although it would depend on the company/person reviewing you... for example, if I were applying for a position at Oracle or even Microsoft I wouldn't put it, OTOH, if it was Google or Valve I would.

You are giving people information to scrutinize about yourself, how they interpret this is a gamble, if you think such gamble is worth, go for it.

share

I don't put it in my CV. I normally will include it either in the signature for my cover letter or in the signature for my email. It's also linked on my blog, and that signature is definitely in my email.

It's also my first answer to 'How do you stay up to date with programming?'

share
    
+1. I think adding SO profile as a signature apart from the Facebook and Google+ ids is something noteworthy. –  Karthik Sreenivasan Jan 31 '12 at 6:49

The way you've worded the statement about blogs and SO in your question would be a negative for me, were I interviewing you (and I've interviewed developers: not many, maybe about 20). You've basically shown the recruiter this:

Blogs are important

But I don't have one. Instead, here's a link to something else.

If you believe that blogging is an important skill for an engineer(FN1), then have a blog. If you think that having SO is important(FN1), then do that instead.

(FN1) I believe that neither blogging nor SO is a necessary nor a sufficient, nor necessarily even a positive, skill for engineers. What they are good for is demonstrating that you have other skills that are necessary: but only if you actually have those skills. If you are good at understanding new technologies, sharing information with other people, mentoring less experienced developers, learning from problems you've had to solve, or doing research and explaining how that helps you in your work, then blogging or answering technical questions on SO will indeed demonstrate that you are competent at those things. Being a prolific blogger or stack overflower is not, in itself, a worthwhile goal unless you want to be a technical writer or a conference speaker.

In other words, get yourself over to the right of the Programmer Competency Matrix in the areas you care about, then write about what you've learned. If your insights are important or beneficial enough then you will not need to point interviewers at them: they will already read your blog and you will have already answered their questions on SO.

share

There is a lot of useful advise already posted on here. However, there appear to be a couple of important factors missing. Therefore, if I was you, which I am not, then I would not put it on your resume if you have:

  1. answered questons during working hours. Some companies are really strict about using forums (yes, even professional one like Stackoverflow) during working hours.

  2. directly refered to your current organisation or any scenario that could lead you into a discussion over confidentiality. Employers are protective over identity and reputation, as marketability and brand building depend upon these factors. I would make doubly sure that you have checked this.

share

I think it's fine to put any community efforts on your CV, I for one would at least then be able to look up some real answers, blog posts, open source contributions etc that you've made.

share
    
@Martin so do you think putting it under "Forums/Blogs/Miscellaneous others" is fine? I think stackoverflow is a forum basically. –  Sandeepan Nath Jan 21 '11 at 10:02
    
sorry @Martijn Verburg –  Sandeepan Nath Jan 21 '11 at 10:07

Frankly using the pretext of helping others as a tool to sell yourself may not go well down with many people.

The way I look at it, SO et al is an excellent way of networking with fellow programmers and the community. Eventually the hiring managers would get interested if you continue to keep doing well at SO, but I really would not want to tinker with this in my resume.

I suggest please consider contributing actively to an open source project in your chosen area. This creates a lot better impression.

share

The following is a section on my resume at the bottom of the first page.

Writings & Public Work

Personal Site – http://storyinmemo.com

Sysadmin background: http://serverfault.com/users/3139/jeff-ferland

Security background: http://security.stackexchange.com/users/836/jeff-ferland

share
    
+1 - concise yet informative; sends the message "I'm not watching Gilligan's Island reruns in my off time; I'm serious about my profession." –  Scott Wilson Apr 27 '12 at 13:06

I think without putting so many details, it is better to mention the link to your SO profile and mention the reputation you currently have.

In my resume i have separate section for internet profiles where i mention links to facebook, twitter, youtube etc. just the link so if the employer is interested he can click that link.

By going through this method its better insert a link to your profile with the reputation

Member of Stackoverflow community wiki for XXX duration 
http://stackoverflow.com/users/351903/sandeepan-nath
Reputation : 183
share
3  
mentioning the reputation may give rise to unwanted focus. if they aren't familiar with SO they might use the number to evaluate relative worth which may or may not work against you. –  Aditya P Mar 15 '11 at 5:38

Base it on the feedback you are getting on your resume. The less job experience you have, the more you may need to rely on: blogs, SO activity, code posting sites, open source contributions, certifications, publications, etc.

Arrange it under a section that makes sense like: Other Activities, Professional Contributions.

SO sites are more likely going to help you indirectly in finding a job. You get to practice communicating in a technical environment. It's a tool to find solutions to problems. There should be enough general information on best practices.

Carpenters don't get hired because they carry hammers; it's because they know how to swing it.

share

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.