Hi All,

I have a dilemma that I would like to share so that I can get your thoughts.

I have a very strong patent attorney candidate that I have been working with.  He and his firm had a discussion and I do mean a true discussion about his current position and where it was going.  Both of them came to the agreement that it was not a good fit through no fault of any ones.  In fact, the firm referred the candidate to me for assistance in his job search.

The candidate has finished all of his projects and no longer works at the firm and you know the old saying "it is better to have a job when looking for a job."  Here is where I need your help, the candidate is currently helping a friend who works for a really good company with some patent work.  The experience he is getting is great and it will help to keep him from having a lapse in his employment but how do we title it.  I had a firm turn down a great candidate with good grades and working for a Fortune 50 chem company because he was contract. If we put that he is employed the potential firm is going to want to know why he is leaving when he just got started and I am afraid if we put contract he will be shot down as well.

Thank you for any help you can give me,

With Regards,

Theresa Hunter

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One option is to leave it off the resume entirely.  Another is to put it down as contract work which is temporary.  I find that a client who won't hire a candidate simply because they are contracting while between jobs is not a client I want to work for. Also, the mentality that someone who isn't currently employed is not worth considering is no longer acceptable.

Realistically, and I mean honestly, I've had candidates turned down for things like "we don't like that he prosecuted patents", when the HR person had no idea what the phrase meant, and when I explained it, wouldn't accept my explanation. Sometimes they're just as dumb as a door-knob, and it's nobody's fault, but there may be nothing to do about it, except go over their head.

Another ridiculous example I could cite is a CEO who judged all the candidates specifically by their type-font, without even reading the resumes themselves.  You can't deal with every kind of stupidity.  The best strategy is usually to be honest, but if honesty doesn't work, that certainly tells you something about the Client and their values.

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