What do you know

Finding a job for an ex-offender may seem like an impossible task for you when you first start the search. Using what you know to get paid may have not been the problem. The trick is to use your personal experience to get legal work. To do this you need to make use of three talents you already possess:

  • Knowledge
  • Experience
  • Hobbies

These three areas of your life will provide the wide range of choices which any ex-offender can find a job.


Knowledge is the information you gained through either education or experience. As an ex-offender you can use personal experience to get work. Jobs for ex-offenders can include some of the following ideas when it comes to using what you know to get paid:

  • Counselors
  • Legal aids
  • Minister
  • Institutional food service and maintenance

Apart from what an ex-offender has learned while incarcerated, using what you know to get paid can also include any knowledge or skills you had before your criminal history.


Experience is the term used for your amount practice and ability with certain tasks and skills. You can use your personal experience to get work even as an ex-offender. Jobs which require experience in certain fields don't always require college degrees or certification to be good jobs. Such jobs as the following can fall into this category:

  • Carpentry
  • Welding
  • Mechanics
  • Painting

If you have certification in a certain field, make sure you use that experience to your advantage. Even if the experience is not in the field you wish to follow, using this experience is a quick way of using what you know to get paid.


Another way to use what you know to get paid is making money with your hobbies. This might include finding work at a local garage if you are a mechanic; or a landscape position if you are a gardener. If your hobbies include crafts, try using this to get employment teaching others what you know. Hobbies are a good way of using personal experience to get work.

Time and Location Issues

When it comes to jobs and ex-offenders, most often time is an issue when you are first starting out. Setting your sights on a limited focus of a short time frame or specific community will not help. Some things you may want to consider will include the following:

  • Continuing to look for a job that suits you, knowing that this may take time
  • Moving to a location where your skills and abilities are more useful
  • Take training to learn new skills which are needed in your area
  • Look for related fields where your skills and abilities can be used

Jobs for ex-offenders can come from anywhere if you seek them out. No employer will simply hand you a position. Using what you know to make a legal income is not as hard as it will seem to be at first. It will take time and work but the efforts will pay off many times over along the way through life.