Regardless of the reason why you’ve been out of work, gaps in employment are generally looked upon negatively by employers. There are certain risks involved to hiring candidates who’ve been out of the workforce, but you can eliminate any hesitation an employer may have by making certain modifications to your resume.
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If your resume has employment gaps because you’ve been out of work, consider the following:
Provide insight to what you’ve accomplished during unemployment.
When you don’t offer information about what you’ve been doing and what you’ve accomplished during unemployment (either in your cover letter or resume), employers may think you’ve simply been lounging around. Break that assumption with information like volunteer work, education, travels, and so on. By doing this, you can share what you’ve accomplished and highlight how the whole experience may benefit the new job you are applying to. You want to express that you’ve been productive during this time.
Highlight skills and certifications received that are current and applicable to the job.
It’s common for employers to assume those who have been out of work are lacking in skills and know-how. Break that assumption by revealing training and certifications you’ve received to remain current in your field of work.
Reformat your resume to focus on function and skills.
Resumes are typically formatted chronologically with your most current work experience first, but when you’ve been out of work, it may make more showcase key skills before going through your chronology of jobs. A hybrid resume allows you to highlight relevant accomplishments and achievements on the job rather than jumping right into your work history.
When you’ve been out of work, to an employer, it’s not so much about why you’ve been out of work – it’s more about what you’ve done to be productive. You need to demonstrate to the employer that, no matter the situation, you continue to have the drive to succeed.
This post was originally published on an earlier date.
About the author
Don Goodman’s firm was rated as the #1 Resume Writing Service in 2013, 2014, and 2015. Don is a triple-certified, nationally recognized Expert Resume Writer, Career Management Coach and Job Search Strategist who has helped thousands of people secure their next job. Check out his Resume Writing Service. Get a Free Resume Evaluation or call him at 800.909.0109 for more information.
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