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How open should we be to recruiters about employment status?

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Senior Software Engineer at BlackRocka year ago

To folks who have been impacted by the ongoing layoffs, should we be transparent about our ongoing situation with regard to employment? Just wondering if that would tend to hurt one as the interview progresses towards the offer stage.

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    Tech Lead @ Robinhood, Meta, Course Hero
    a year ago

    If you have been laid off, I think you should just be open about it. If you're not, it'll just lead to awkward situations where they press you for why you're not at your most recent job and you'll have to either lie or tell the truth anyways.

    Being laid off is not some black stain on your reputation, especially now. People understand that if you're laid off in this current climate, it almost certainly wasn't your fault. Everybody is doing huge layoffs now due to the poor macro-economic conditions, and these massive reductions in force hit everybody: High performers, low performers, and everyone in between.

    In fact, sharing that you got laid off might even be a good thing. A silver lining is that there has been a mountain of sympathy for folks who have been laid off - I see "I just got laid off" posts go viral every day on LinkedIn. You can consider making a post like this too; there are obviously a lot of recruiters on LinkedIn and maybe you'll get some reach outs.

    I highly recommend going through our masterclass on tech layoffs if you haven't already - It talks more about this all, especially in the 2nd half.

    Here's another great discussion on how you should communicate your prior work history (and exits) when it comes to interviewing: "How do I pursue recruiters if I was fired from my previous job?"

    Lastly, here's some great Taro resources to help folks out there who are on the job hunt:

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    Tech Lead/Manager at Meta, Pinterest, Kosei
    a year ago

    By employment status, are you referring to whether you got laid off, or to your legal ability to work in the country?

    My answer is the same as Alex's in either case: you probably should reveal this.

    • If you were part of a mass layoff, there's less stigma around a layoff.
    • If you have are an H1-B or other position which requires you to quickly find a new job, your employer would find out anyway, right? Since they'd have to transfer over your visa? If that's true, you may as well reveal it earlier. If not, I could see the argument for keeping it private in order to gain more leverage.
BlackRock, Inc. is an American multi-national investment company based in New York City. Founded in 1988, initially as a risk management and fixed income institutional asset manager, BlackRock is considered to be one of the Big Three index fund managers that dominate America.
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