1.3: Returning to Workforce
- Last updated
Save as PDF
- Understand how gaps in employment history affect your hiring potential.
- Develop strategies for how to talk about gaps in a truthful and positive way.
- Learn how to overcome other potential obstacles relating to employment gaps.
Employment Gaps Raise Questions about Your Qualifications
- unemployment, especially in a down market, where job searches take longer
- family leave
- medical leave
- personal leave (e.g., to travel or try something new)
Take Control of the Message behind Your Gap
Convince Yourself First to Help Convince Prospective Employers
- You have reasonable explanations for taking time off from your career, including a layoff, medical leave, family leave, or personal leave.
- Your skills, expertise, or network might become out of date in your absence, or prospective employers might assume that has happened.
- You need to make a strong case for why you took time off, how you benefited, and how the employer will benefit.
- You also need to make sure you have skills, expertise, a network, financial cushion, confidence, and a support structure to make a successful return to the workforce.
- You might consider seeing a therapist or counselor if you have unresolved emotional issues pertaining to your leave.
- If you are returning from the workforce, write your story about why you took time off. Then edit your story by half and again by half, until you have the three top points of your time away. This is your compelling and concise message.
- Review your time off month by month or year by year and itemize specific accomplishments. Use a job description for a job you are targeting and make a case for how your accomplishments during the gap translate to the target job.