How to Address Employment Gaps on a Resume

How to Address Employment Gaps on a Resume

If you have employment gaps on your resume, they can easily be explained. Even contract positions and career transitions can be addressed without feeling the need to hide them. The process doesn’t have to be overly complicated. Just be sure to own your narrative with confidence.  Here are a couple of examples that represent common challenges as well as our recommendations.

The Mom with an Employment Gap

“I was a Human Resource Manager for 10 years prior to becoming a stay at home mom. I currently have a 6-year gap on my resume and need to return to work. Now what? How can I craft my resume in a manner that doesn’t draw attention to my consecutive years of unemployment?”

Recommendations

Taking a career break to focus on your family is wonderful. Rather than focusing on the gap, let’s focus on what you have gained from the break. Were you volunteering, consulting, tutoring, or in training? If so, list those experiences on your resume as well as the corresponding transferrable skills to fill the gaps.

Tutoring Help on Resume

The Subcontractor

“I’m a 23-year experienced Scrum Master, managing information technology projects using Agile and SAFe methodologies. I have dozens of contract positions listed on my resume and it looks like I’ve been job-hopping. Is there a better format for me to display my accomplishments?”

Recommendations

A chronological resume isn’t the only way to showcase your skills.  Instead of listing all your previous employment achievements under one heading, categorize your work history. Create several sections such as Consulting Opportunities, Contract Positions, and Professional Experiences.

Subcontractor Resume

The Former Executive Who Is Not Ready to Retire

“I retired last year from an executive business development role, but realize that I still have so much to offer. The intellectual stimulation is something I deeply miss. It’s difficult enough for someone in their 50’s to seek employment and now I’m in my 60’s. My resume is a solid 3 pages. I need it to convey my passion for mentorship and consulting instead of what I achieved.”

Recommendations

It sounds like you could benefit from a 1-page networking resume. Think of your resume as a marketing document.  The content sells your key competencies, previous track record, and passion for serving others. It’s about changing the message from key phrases like high growth strategies to professional development of personnel.

Career Transition

Reach Out for Additional Tips

These scenarios are just a sampling of the many challenges that our clients bring to us.  To take advantage of additional writing tips, follow us on Facebook or connect on LinkedIn.  If you feel overwhelmed or are just pressed for time, then reach out to us for a quote or visit us online at msantiagogroup.com.

Resume Tips