Having a gap in your work history always means that at any interview you might get into, it will most certainly come up as a poignant question – ‘WHY?’
Mostly because from the point of view of the recruiters, an unexplained gap in an otherwise stellar resume can pose a lot of doubts regarding the candidate themselves – What happened to them that prompted the break? Why would they do it? Would they be any good when they start again?
And for the candidate, it means rapid racing of heart-rate and sweaty bids on the forehead trying to frame an answer that sounds convincing to those sitting in front of them carrying the power to make or break their professional dreams. But an employment gap is not always a dealbreaker when it comes down to your skills and your worth as an employee. It is barely a problem that could easily be solved with a few tips from our professional resume writers! Read on to know how:
Always be truthful about what happened:
Coming out clean about your break from the professional scene is the best way you can dodge the question with elan, and it is a very obvious one as well. Because, the people sitting across from you would know when you are lying and when you are not. Hopefully, you must have had a pretty convincing reason as to why you had to take the gap to sort your priorities out, and the better you try and explain it to them, the more your chances are at getting your recruiter and manager to sympathise with you.
Try to remain positive about the experience:
Maybe your experience with your previous employer was not good, maybe you did not like that job and took some time off to find out your own calling. Or maybe you had a huge setback in your personal life that led you to shift your focus from your professional aspirations. Whatever the reason might have been, good or bad, while sharing that experience with your possible future recruiter, try to keep the tone positive – so that the ones giving you the job see that you have emerged as a stronger person as well as a candidate on the otherside of what could’ve easily been interpreted as a professional faux pas.
Try to focus on your activities in the time of your break:
Ideally, on your break from the professional scene, you would not have completely wasted your time doing absolutely nothing, because nobody ever does that. Therefore, be sure that you mention any new skill set that you have learnt and developed in the meantime, any new certificate or short courses you might have taken, any volunteer work or experience that you were associated with in the interim – because that would end up being quite impressive for the recruiters to hear, and they will end up thinking that you put your free time to good use and that too productive in a way that favors you professionally – effectively making you a favorable candidate for the job.
Do talk about your future plans:
While sharing your unemployment stories, try to pull the focus to the future – as in how the break helped you to sort your life and professional aspirations out, and how you productively used the time to enhance your skill sets for the future plans you have regarding your career. Instead of profusely apologizing for your gap, try to drive home your conviction and gumption about the next phase of your life to the recruiter sitting across from you, because that is what they want yo hear, and that is what gets you hired.