Career Articles - How To Explain Gaps In Your Resume

by Sarika Kabra - Date: 2010-08-02 - Word Count: 525 Share This!

In a lot of different scenarios, there is the likelihood of there being gaps in your resume. Periods of time when you have not held down actual employment which may just look strange in your resume. Employment gaps in resumes may indicate that a person was somehow unemployable for that period - either because of difficult times in the job market, layoffs, personal inabilities or illness of any kind. None of these may reflect very kindly on you. However consider the fact that you can explain away these gaps truthfully in a number of cases:

Working on a New Startup: If, after your last employment you tried your hand at some sort of entrepreneurship, this is not a thing to hide at all. This shows an entrepreneurial spirit and if that start up failed for some reason, it does not reflect poorly on you - many do fail for no fault of their own. The fact that one had the guts to go for it on one's own actually reflects positively and is bound to have offered the person some valuable experiences and insights.

Volunteer Work: Just because work did not pay for a time or paid very little, does not make it any less work. If there is a gap in your resume sample because of having been engaged in volunteer work, then there need not be a gap. Volunteer work should also be included in the resume - it reflects well on a person and it can offer valuable experience as well.

Travel: If you took some time out between jobs to travel, this is nothing unusual and certainly nothing to hide. Travel can also be a valuable experience; it gives perspective and knowledge of other cultures and economies - all of which may actually look good on sample resumes. In particular people, who have been travelling the Far East and South American destinations, could gain some fairly interesting and useful insights as well.

Time Off for a Baby: There is nothing to explain or prevaricate here - you were out of the job market for a very real reason - though this could be rather tricky in some cases. It does imply that you were out of touch with a particular industry for a time; many employers may be willing to respect this.

Laid Off: Now if an employee was let go for any reason and has not been able to land a job for a considerable length of time, then this could be a red flag as to the employability of the person. However at the time of the interview you could explain the circumstances that led to the layoff and if there is a general recession on, employers do at times tend to be sympathetic towards those who have had trouble finding a job in difficult times.

Just remember that it is best not to prevaricate too much and outright misinformation or lying is a No-No. Untruthfulness on your sample resume has a way of being caught out and insincerity and deceit is the last impression you want to give a prospective employer.

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