Gaps in your work history may occur for many reasons: inability to find a job immediately after a layoff, the decision to become a stay-at-home parent, health issues, and so on.
After a gap, writing your resume may be harder than you expected. Here are a few hints to help:
- Make sure you set up a professional email address, using your name. You can keep your “happyhomebody” address for friends and relatives but not for your resume. It is recommended you choose a gmail or outlook.com email address if you are looking for an account. Yahoo! rejects many emails from providers and has been compromised for scamming. Hotmail and AOL also reject emails, and many potential employers consider folks who use these email addresses to be “old-fashioned.”
- Clean up your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other social media accounts, since hiring managers and recruiters do look online for information about candidates. Do not depend on them being less accessible in searches, since they may know a friend of a friend–and will be able to get access to you. On every post ask yourself if you would be happy if your boss, parents, grandparents, or children saw the post. If not, delete it.
- Give yourself credit for jobs you undertook as a volunteer or as a favor to a friend. That website you created for free still required website development skills a company would value.
- Scan job postings and advertisements to see how your skills might fit a variety of job titles. Do not become wedded to one title or even one industry; your skills and achievements may apply to a wider range of jobs than you think.
- Build up your referral network. Become active on LinkedIn, in professional organizations and in service-oriented groups in your community.
There are many techniques for preventing recruiters and hiring managers from focusing on a work history gap and for ensuring that they recognize the value you can bring to a company. Contact Robin’s Resumes®, and we will help ease the process of writing your resume.