Recruiters would twist a basic question to get the same interview answers from you. In essence, the question above- what have you been doing since your last job is a way to inquire about gaps in your career. You could in other words be asked why you have been unemployed for a certain period of time.
According to a HR expert, at Corporate Staffing Services, it is important to address any career gaps you might have in your career as recruiters are never keen on bringing on board an individual whose skills have been idle for a long time.
“By any means possible ensure that there are no gaps in your career. There are various ways you can fill such gaps which, when asked during an interview, you can disclose to the recruiter,” a HR expert says.
Some job seekers commit the mistake of saying they have been idle since no one was giving them a job. There is a better interview answer to such a question that can work in your favour.
So, what are the typical interview answers you can give when asked ‘what have you been doing since your last job?
4 Interview Answers To The Question ‘What Have You Been Doing Since Your Last Job?
There are various reasons why you may take a long time out of job that demand equally varied interview answers when confronted with a need to explain you long joblessness. Such answers, according to the career advice expert include the following
1. Interview answers that require you explain your volunteering experience
This is the right time to disclose your volunteering experience. While many job seekers downplay volunteering, it is a career experience that has a great potential of working in your favour at the interview.
“You should as well mention the names of the organizations you volunteered for and how the volunteering experience added to your career growth. Mention the skills you gained in the course of the volunteers and accomplishments if there are,” HR advices.
Someone looking for an NGO job can for instance give the following typical interview answer.
“I have always volunteered for organization ABC and after my previous job, that is where I fell back and indulged in charitable activities that included…”
2. Say you went back to school
Most job seekers, tired of the unyielding job search tend to opt for furthering education. Those with first degree go for masters or a diploma to expand their opportunities. Coincidentally, most recruiters settle on people who have satisfied with their educational ventures. No one would want you to ask for time out of work to go furthering your education.
Therefore, saying that you took the opportunity after your previous job to go back to school is bound to work for you as it sends the sign that you have gathered more training bound to benefit the company. Mention how you feel your decision to further education was wise concerning the job you are being interviewed for.
Ideally, an administrative professional could give the following interview answer “After my last job, I decide to pursue a six-month certificate course in office procedures, an aspect of my career I hadn’t trained for in my degree.”
3. Part time work
Say that you fell back to your part time work after your previous job. It is a common thing to have side hustles and recruiters have no problem with it. They know it is a way to boost your earnings and even make you a better employee.
If you are in the communication profession, you can reveal that you fell back to freelance photography to earn a living. Say the things you did, unconventional as they may be, provided they kept you occupied.
A music enthusiast for instance can decide to give the following answer to explain that they have not been idle.
“Since I have a passion for music, my college friends and I revived our instrumentalist band and we have been making money by offering entertainment at events.”
Related Article >>> The Ultimate Interview Preparation Checklist
4. Interview answer if you were on maternity leave
While on maternity it is unlikely you will be an active job seeker. This accrues to your maternal obligations. According to a HR expert, there is no problem in explaining that you were tending to your toddler.
Mothers can also be active job seekers for instance those who blog and do online research writing while at home. A career advice professional can for instance give the following typical interview answer.
“Though I had a lot to do during my maternity leave, I always created time on a daily basis to update my blog that offers career related advice to single mothers.”
Truly, few people decide to stay idle after their jobs end. It is only that job seekers lack the exact words to phrase the interview answers when confronted with the question demanding what they have been doing after their previous job came to an end.
By all means, give only those interview answers that will let the recruiter know that you have been an active job seeker and that you have not been idle at home.
Having trouble passing interviews? Speak to a professional Interview Coach. Click here.