Explaining Gaps on Your CV

10/10/2017

There used to be a time when a CV was automatically dismissed due to gaps in employment.  However organisations now accept there are legitimate occasions when a break from unemployment is understandable.  The most important thing is to be honest about the break and not hide any gaps or lye about the reason for taking a break.

If you have a gap on your CV, there’s more than likely a reasonable explanation for it. Getting that explanation across to potential employers is vital to stand the best chance of progressing to the next stage of hiring, once at the interview you can explain in more detail.

Unemployment
You became unemployed – probably the most common reason for a gap on your CV. It can happen to anyone. Be open and honest about it and state what you did during this while you were off. If for example you became redundant, did you do any voluntary work or attend a course? It’s important to emphasise any constructive activities because it demonstrates positivity – remember employers verify work history and the last thing you want is to appear dishonest and untrustworthy so suck it up tell the truth.

Being made redundant is a gap in your employment which is completely out of your control, but it is how you cope with it that will influence your self-esteem. Let them know about your optimistic approach which will eventually result in a positive outcome.

Travelling
This is essentially a circumstance which you have created – for example many students take a gap year to travel the world/experience different cultures/find themselves, this is perfectly acceptable. If you lived in a different country for a few months highlight the fact that you may have participated in a language course this shows a willingness to be flexible and engage with people other than UK nationals.

Raising a Family
More and more men are now taking a career break to look at the family, it’s quickly become a trait of the modern man.  So, whether male or female, this reason for a break is completely normal and often helps to enhance multi-tasking skills.

Illness
This one can be delicate, but if you have a significant gap it will obviously warrant an explanation. The main issue to focus on is that you are now fit and willing to work.

Further Education
Many people take time off to better their skills or improve their education, state the name and address of the college or university you attended and perhaps mention the name of a tutor who may be contacted.

If you do not explain a gap for whatever reasons an employer may question your ability or dependability to perform a job, it is unlikely that you will be selected for an interview, which we don’t want! However, a gap will not necessarily work against you .

Any gap in your employment history may have been in or outside of your control but whatever the reason the most relevant factor is to explain it in a positive manner.

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