Techniques for Explaining Gaps in Your Resume

Many people have gaps in their work history for a variety of reasons. Perhaps they encounter a life change such as having a child, decide to return to school, or just need time to find the right job. Explaining the situation depends on the reason for the gap and what you did while you were unemployed.


Make the most of time in between jobs.

Many people are currently searching for positions, and proving that you have stayed sharp and productive during an employment gap will set you apart. Searching for a job can be its own full time job, but there are lots of ways to stay involved in your career during that time. Joining a professional or trade association, attending networking events, volunteering, consulting or freelancing will show that you have remained involved and continued working toward your career goals.


Use your cover letter and resume.

You don’t need to detail job gaps in your cover letter, but it’s a good place to highlight the positive things you did during the gap along with your skills and experience. On your resume, add a special section that lists any professional associations you’re in and what you have done to participate or contribute, volunteer experience, or anything relevant to your career or positive contributing personality.


Use some creative self-marketing to deemphasize gaps.

When listing jobs on your resume, you don’t need to use a month and a year; using only a year is sufficient. Changing the formatting can also deemphasize dates; unbold the date text and bold information such as the job title. You also don’t need to include every job on your resume, especially if you have been working for years. Writing a functional resume, which orders experience by relevance instead of chronologically, can also help. However, while these techniques avoid highlighting gaps in employment, it’s important to never lie.

There is no need to be embarrassed about gaps in employment. Remember, most people have at least one, especially in this economy. Big employment companies, such as Solvo Global, understand that. With some strategic self marketing you can shed positive light on gaps to turn employer’s attention toward the great things you have to offer.