How to Explain Employment Gaps – Interview Insider

How to explain employment gaps - interview insider

Got a gap? Here’s how to address it…

Have a gap in your employment history or a job that wasn’t so great? There are many ways to address this on a resume without embellishing which can be grounds for dismissal if you’re hired or eliminate you as a potential candidate if you’re not yet an employee.

How To Explain Employment Gaps

There are a lot of job seekers who have been out of work for some time and it isn’t a concern for most employers, as many people are in the same situation. The best thing to do if you are asked about employment gaps is to put a positive spin on it while telling the truth.

If you were at home caring for family or taking time to recharge and do some career planning while furthering your education or job skills, it’s okay to say just that.

You can also list other forms of “work” on your resume to address employment gaps:

Consulting Projects

Freelance Work

Volunteer Work

Continuing Education

Just be sure to list out the dates along with other details that help the employer to understand what you were doing with that time (titles, responsibilities, skills learned, etc.)

What About “Filler” Jobs?

Many people are not afforded the luxury to wait for the right job to come along; they need any job to make sure they meet their obligations while they work towards landing a position within their field.

Employers have seen and understand this, too. To address these types of positions, try putting a creative and positive slant on the job itself. Instead of saying: “set up displays,” you can say “extensive work with visual merchandising.” Then go on to explain any other skills or areas that you contributed to. “Used plan-o-grams, pulled stock and worked with inventory control systems. I became so efficient at these tasks that I was placed in charge of training staff and new hires on visual merchandising standards for the store.”

Final Thoughts:

Being creative, honest and flexible will get you a lot further in your search than embellishing and risking getting caught. Employers in today’s job market are far more understanding of these common scenarios, all of which can be addressed with a little bit of wordsmithing on your part.