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experience required

Ranch Hand
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when employers for IT or programming jobs say they want X years of experience do they mean employment experience (as in  I held a job working for someone gaining the experience) or is working on my own for little / no pay or just for fun   to get  the experience acceptable  as well?
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It depends. When they say 1 to 2 year experience then the employers may consider self taught projects and open source contributions, but when they say 5+ year experience some industry level experience is expected.

As far as your CV is concerned, you can put all different types of experiences, and it is up to the prospective employer ...
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Agreed on it depends. Also, remember that # years experience isn't always literal. So if they want 2+ years and you have 1.5 years plus a hobby project, you are probably fine.

The difference between ONLY personal projects and experience with others is huge though.
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