An Explanation of an Employment Gap

Reentering the workforce after a hiatus of any length can be difficult on your job search and cause concern in your potential employers. Still, most professionals have experienced a gap in their employment history at one time or another and many are living in the gap currently, due to the languishing economy of today. The key to landing a job after having a break in working for a period of time is to effectively handle your explanation for the Employment Gap professionally and fearlessly. Here are some tips to help you do just that.Revise Your ResumeYour resume will always require some polishing and revisions when applying to any job after any amount of time, but when you have been on a break, you need to update your resume to include what you have been doing since your last job. Any volunteer work, educational, or skills training programs can be used to fill in the spaces where you would have placed employment histories in chronological order. This type of resume can be written in a bullet form; it would be a functional resume and simply state your skills and places of employment while omitting dates and years. If you wish to use a chronologically ordered resume you can give it a better look by using years instead of dates. For example, instead of writing USA Banking Center March 2004-June 2005, you would write USA Banking Center 2004-2005. Employers tend to pay greater attention to dates, not the years they correspond to.Uncover Employment Gaps in a Cover LetterYou should already be using a cover letter in your job search, no matter what the case. It is a professional and personalized part of the application package, and if you have suffered from unemployment for any length of time it is the perfect opportunity to elaborate on your employment gap. You can go into detail about why you have been unemployed and what you have been doing in the meantime. Whether you had to stay home to raise children or to care for ill parents, took time off from working to educate yourself or simply struck out in the Job Search playing field for awhile, you should be honest and remain professional. While you don’t want to sound like you are asking for sympathy, most employers can understand that life sometimes gets in the way.Draw Attention to Everything but Your Employment GapWhile your employment gap may make you wary of your chances of landing a job, if you’ve worked at all or had job related training or education, remember there is more to what you have accomplished working. An employer will be more concerned with how you spent that time than the fact that you had a gap at all. Revise your resume, go over the employment gap briefly in your cover letter and then let it go. If it is brought up in an interview, remain professional and calmly explain the reason for your employment gap again, adding what you have learned from and during it.Remember that the employer was obviously interested in the skills, education, and experience you had previously accumulated enough to invite you in for a chat that could result in a job.

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