16

While this is half tongue in cheek, this website and community may end up being the premier site that over half the world's programmers regularly attend - especially if Jeff and Joel create localized versions (with automatic translation, please).

The rep doesn't have a 1:1 correlation with experience, ability, etc. It does strongly hint at the ability to quickly comprehend and answer a variety of questions (check out the top 25 - few of them strongly specialize in any one type of question or answer). It also strongly hints at an obsession and perhaps spending more time on this site than working, but there may be a balance point with optimal rep - enough to indicate expertise, not so much to indicate wasted time.

At some point Stackoverflow may hit a critical mass where hiring managers will understand and use it as a hiring resource - checking out not only one's rep, but the types of answers and questions the potential hire posts, and seeing how their peers respond to them (comments, votes, etc).

I can't see what the tipping point would be though, assuming it exists in the future.

  • At what point would you seriously consider adding a link to your SO user page in your resume?
  • At what point would you seriously consider putting your rep number on the resume itself? (before you say never, first imagine a world where this is commonplace, and then work backwards to see what drastic, unimaginable changes would have to occur before you felt it was useful)
  • If you knew your future employer is going to be looking at your questions and answers, would you review them in advance and consider closing/deleting/modifying anything?
  • Ancillary - Reputation represents time, and time can also be represented by money. At what point will we see financial transactions involving rep? This certainly would happen before rep became a resume option.
47

I think that if you need to include links to sites like SO in your resume, your resume isn't strong enough. If you're that good, you shouldn't need to sugar your resume or yourself with such additional things. If anything, SO would be a footnote to an interview.

21

Don't put the rep number in the CV, sounds tacky (imo). However mentioning you use the site in a non-academic part of the CV might help to show your interest in programming and indicate you are serious about it. That you read up on things and help others in your spare time.

Often interviewers of (good) companies will like to see that you are passionate and hobby projects help as well as what reading you do on the subject. Stack Overflow would count IMO, they can see your passion and your skill, they might even be aware of the site!

EDIT: Better yet, Just leave it for the interview, they might ask something i.e "DO you read any programming books/blogs" and you can bring it up then.

12

Personally, I think a high rep on SO might actually hurt your chances of getting a job. In order to get a high rep, you probably spend way too much time on the site and not getting your work done. Most employers don't like that sort of thing ;)

9

When you've not accomplished enough in your professional career to warrant a better placement than an unrealistic number from an unknown developer website.

I mean, come on! I'm almost at 3,000 and I don't know anything!

In all seriousness I've wondered the same thing when I was nominated for the Content Writer of the Year award at SitePoint. If you're a recognised member of a community you spend a reasonable amount of time at you grow a certain self-respect for your ability. Of course there's no way I would put it in my CV but it's nice to think that these accomplishments will mean anything to outsiders.

One place you could put it is on a more informal online resume. If you spruce the page up a bit and make it more uniform with the rest of your website (if you have one) then you could probably bit it in with interests. A lot of academics put stupid scores and rankings from websites and online games on their web pages. I've known some dedicate 1% to students/work and 99% to crazy propaganda like why you're evil if you use Windows or why Cyclists are the best lovers (no joke).

8

Just say no.

By all means use questions/answers as evidence that you know your stuff and can communicate well - but the rep score? Heck no. (If the scoring system changes again, does that mean we all become smarter or dumber overnight? I don't think so.)

8

For reasons that have already been expressed, I have no interest in putting my SO rep on my resume, but I sure would like a Stack Overflow widget with rep and badges to put on my blog.

7

You might as well suggest I put my Xbox achievement score or my druid's spellpower on my resume. They're equally as impressive and pointless.

6

Never. High rep is not necessarily a good thing: it can mean a lot of time at work wasted online rather than working.

5

Link to your SO profile from your website, which I assume is already on your CV/Resume.

Your site is a great deal more valid on a CV as a way to express information about you, and if the reviewer is bothered enough about you and conscious enough of SO to be interested in your profile it's available for them from there.

edit: I'm talking about the profile here not the rep number, the profile seems very interesting to an interviewer to my mind, the rep is a fairly useless number as others have covered very thoroughly

4

A related (although more general) question is "Is Stack Overflow Reputation Marketable?"

4

The part of the question that nobody has (yet) answered:

If you knew your future employer is going to be looking at your questions and answers, would you review them in advance and consider closing/deleting/modifying anything?

I always assume that future and present employers will look at my web presence -- as will anyone else that I deal with on a professional or personal basis (my wife Googled me when we first met). Particularly since I use the same user-id through much of the web.

As a result, while I let my personality show through (otherwise in-person interactions would have a ring of falseness), I try very hard not to let my responses be less than professional.

3

Obviously my rep is not that high, but even if it were I'd seriously reconsider this more than once.

Chances are, whatever people that gets first peek at your resume will be HR people, who will have no idea what you are talking about and that means your SO Rep spot is taking up a spot where you can fit more interesting data about yourself.

Secondly, if I were to bring up SO, I would wait until I go in for a personal interview and I see that they actively engage in the site as well (could be a good question to ask on the side, such as what kind of online communities do you use for obscure programming questions.)

That way, you can impress them with a good question and demonstrate that you are active in that community.

So in summary, I would not consider putting it on a resume.

Quick edit: It may be possible that whatever manager who wants to higher you will try and google your name or look on your webpage (if you provided one). In that case, it might be beneficial to at least make a reference to your SO profile on your webpage.

3

I wouldn't put it in a CV, but I would mention it in an interview if it came up naturally.

I interview quite a few developers, and if they mentioned they had a good SO rep it would work in their favour; not because it means they are a good programmer, but because it proves they have a genuine interest in programming.

3

I think the reputation points mean absolutely nothing.

However, if i was preparing interviews for candidates and one would state his id at SO, i would come to check his questions and answers, that would give me some valuable information about the candidate.

3

I certainly wouldn't, but I'd probably drop in a vague mention of active participation in forums such as SO on the 'misc section' of my CV/resume. I'd leave out anything specific that would identify me on the site, if an employer really really wants to know more they can ask.

3

Perhaps you should simply consider using your real name, so when people search for you on Google they'll see your mad SO skillz. They might even read a couple of your answers and realize they like you even more as a candidate.

2

There is no way I'd put my rep in a resume. All it shows is how much time you spend on this site. Obviously, the higher the number the more time you waste NOT doing work that is directly beneficial to your employers bottom line.

That said, I've reached my limit for today.

1

Maybe if you were jon skeet. But jon skeet doesn't need resumes, so then don't ever cite it.

1

I wouldn't recommend it for a number of reasons:

  1. If the resume is reviewed by the Human Resources department before it is sent to the actual group hiring, they might not be aware of what Stack Overflow is.
  2. There is nothing written that says the Stack Overflow reputation is always going to have a numeric values; they might decide at one point to change the value to a label, similar to what Slashdot did.
  3. If you provide a number then you would also have to provide your user name, if someone browses your answers they might decide they don't like the way you answered something.
  4. There really isn't anywhere to put such an item on a CV.

About the only place where it might make sense would be in a personal blog that you have, but even then it might not be something that you just want out there in the open, even if you have a high score.

1

I would not include my reputation score (for obvious reasons in my case LOL), but I very well might provide a link to my profile page, where questions I've asked and answered could become talking points in an interview. I think this would be a great way for a potential employer to assess the boundaries of my knowledge in a few different areas, and at what relative depth I tend to work.

It probably wouldn't be as important as the code samples I've brought to interviews, but it could be helpful to me and/or the employer in our getting acquainted.

1

I have someone at work that has decided to use my name as his display name.... He only had one point.... Don't think I want that on my CV.

1

Dont wait to all that time, to until when your rep becomes so high, Just say your Stackoverflow alias is Jon Skeet ;)

1

I'm often asked about "what are your other interests" in an interview. They wanted to know about my hobbies, sports, etc. I think mentionning SO fits riiiiiiiight here.

0

I think long and hard before you even consider it, tak a look at your high scoring questions and answers. Many if not most of the big earners and medal winners are either humour, tech gossip, trivial, or highly subjective. Few would impress most serious employers, many would stand against you.

0

if you were applying for a tech-support job, then your SO rep would be highly relevant ;-)

otherwise it's just a number; the content and quality of your questions and answers are far more important

0

Given that if I so choose, I can "farm rep", I'm not sure it's a meaningful number.

0

This might be one of the dumbest questions I've seen so far on this site. Sure, if you're applying to the same place as me make sure you put it in. Also put how many Oreo's (tm) you can stuff in your mouth at the same time. This just shows how people with high rep around here severely overestimate themselves. Give me a break.

P.S - I already know I'll get modded down for this - fire away.

0

Turns out the correct answer was 9 months (6-8 weeks in Jeff's parlance) after asking the question. careers.stackoverflow.com not only lists the rep for each site in the 'trilogy' on the CV, or Repume, if you will, it does so prominently above the fold:

Image of CV/Resume on careers.stackoverflow.com with rep prominent

(from http://careers.stackoverflow.com/adamdavis )

I'm sure this is or will be configurable per the individual's settings. Once a potential employer comes to SO to look for programmers they already have accepted they are looking inside a community that revolves to some degree around the concept of reputation, and this only saves them from having to go search for it.

I still wouldn't (yet?) attach rep to a resume distributed outside SO's ecosystem, but I'll certainly be pointing people here - it's quite a bit easier to deal with than linkedin, and very specific to programming.

The flair on the CV does provide a very quick link to the user's page so potential employers can read the questions and answers, and get a good feel for communication skills - one of the biggest factors in hiring good people. This is something that can only barely be scratched by a good resume.

-Adam