Career Skills Development

What Is A Gap In Employment?

What Is A Gap In Employment

A job seeker’s gap in employment is a period of time (months or years) when they were unemployed. People choose to remain unemployed primarily in order to raise their children, travel, or attend school full-time.

Explaining Gap In Employment In Your Interview

Explaining gap in employment is really just a matter of knowing which reasons to share and which to tell a white lie about or not share. And then being forthright and at ease with your response.

These are some good examples of reasons for a gap in employment:

  • Taking care of a young child
  • Taking care of a sick family member
  • Taking time off to relocate and look for work in a new state or city
  • pursuing any other kind of professional education
  • Continuing your education or returning to school
  • Attempting to launch a business or freelance career

Tips to Explain Gap In Employment In Your Interview

The hiring manager may assume the worst if gap in employment are not explained. Following are some tips to explain gap in employment:

1.Be Honest

People have fantastic imaginations, employers may assume you were incarcerated, an addict, or simply lazy if you have a gap in employment.

That is the most important reason not to include any gaps in your resume. The imagined worst-case scenario vanishes the moment you explain the real reason.

2.Don’t be concerned about every Gap in Employment

You must be honest. However, you do not have to sabotage your own job search by volunteering for activities that will harm you.

What exactly is an employment gap? Anything less than six months is usually acceptable. You’ll still need to explain it, but “Job seeking” should suffice.

Is the a gap in your resume old? Don’t be concerned about job gaps from 7 to 10 years ago. You may need to explain again, but an old gap isn’t a big deal.

Job hopping is not a gap in resume. It’s not ideal to leave a job in less than a year. Nonetheless, more than half of all employers hire job hoppers.

3.Be Prepared

If you have a gap in your resume, it will be highlighted. Explain why you have gaps in your resume. Reassure the hiring manager that you will not do it again. Share what you’ve learned along the way. Keep your explanation to a minimum. Have a goal in mind so you don’t end up in an awkward silence.

Examples Of How To Explain Gaps in Employment In An Interview

Example 01

“I had to resign from my previous position in order to care for an elderly family member.” This is something I’ve been doing for the past year. My siblings and I have since hired a full-time caregiver so that I no longer need to be present and am fully available to work now and in the future. So I’ve started looking for a job, and I’m hoping to find a sales supervisor or manager position that will help me advance my career.”

Example 02

“I was laid off nine months ago. I began my job search immediately after, and I’m currently looking for sales supervisor or sales manager positions to advance my career. I’ve had a few interviews but haven’t found the right fit yet. One thing I’m looking for is the opportunity to mentor and train team members, as well as manage a team directly. “I saw that mentioned in the job description for this position… could you tell me more about it?”

Example 03

After the birth of my daughter, I took a break from working in an office. But I didn’t stop practicing law entirely—during that time, I worked pro bono at a nonprofit organization one day a week. Now that my daughter is in preschool, I’m excited to get back to work.

Example 04

To be honest, my previous position was not a good fit for me, and I struggled with some of the tasks that were a poor fit for my experience. My job position was terminated, which was a very humbling experience. I’ve thought about how I handled the situation since then. What I’ve learned is the importance of asking for help, as well as the importance of ongoing training and education. I’ve taken several classes and worked with a career coach since that time. I’m excited to apply what I’ve learned in a new role.

What Not to Say

1.Don’t Lie

If you have an employment gap, consider expressing your time at companies in terms of years rather than months. This may make the gap less noticeable. However, do not lie about the dates or in your responses. This will almost certainly be discovered during a background check and will be used against you in the end.

2.Don’t Be Negative

It’s natural to to have resentment towards your former employer if you were laid off or fired. But an interview isn’t the best place to share it. Don’t point the finger at others or complain. Instead, keep your tone and words as neutral as possible.

3.Don’t Go Into Too Much Detail

You may share some details if you took time off for personal reasons. But there’s no need to go on and on. You want to keep the focus on your qualifications for the position and your desire to work for the company, not on your personal affairs.

Read also: How to Answer “Tell Me About a Time When You Failed”