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“I am currently working on updating my CV because I am looking for my next role. However, I lost my job about two years ago because the company was down-sizing. This was one of the most trying moments for me because I had just become a father for the second time.
With a young family to take care of, I had to do everything I could to support them. I took the little savings I had and started a business. The returns have been enough to support my family for basic needs but I have realized that I can’t rely on it in the long term.
I’m now looking to go back to employment. What I thought would just be an easy transition has gotten me stuck. I never paid much attention to employment gaps neither did I ever realize that they could even affect my getting another job.
I have been applying for so many jobs now but none of them have amounted to a single interview and have come to realize that employers don’t want to hire someone who has not been actively working.
How do I address these gaps in my CV to finally get the job that I want?” reads an email from Michael.
Are you going through the same thing? Are you wondering how to explain to employers that year you skipped in your career?
CV gaps are becoming more and more popular nowadays especially in an uncertain job market like this one.
And whether you like it or not, an employer will always notice these gaps when you apply for a job. They will want to know why you took that long break from work.
So the question then remains, how do you address such gaps in a way that they work for you without lying?
1. What have you been doing since your last job?
Yes, you have been out of a job for a year or more but what have you been doing with your time since then?
Have you been knocking on every door trying to get a job, pursuing training to update your skills, volunteering, taking the much needed rest to spend more time with family or just have had other projects you were pursuing like a business?
One of the biggest concerns any employer has with someone with employment gaps is that their skills aren’t updated enough to be able to perform on the job.
Such people they assume will need training and that’s why they will be reluctant to hire you.
It’s up to you then to make your CV in such a way that you convince the recruiter that our skills are as up to date as that other person who has been working through out.
And you can do this by demonstrating how you used that time you were away from work in such a way that it shows you are ready and charged to get right back at work.
For instance, if you undertook some form of training or were running your own business, this would go a long way in bridging those employment gaps you have.
2. Make the gaps seems non-existent in an interview
Now if it happens that your CV ends up getting you an interview despite the gap, lest be assured that it will come up. The employer will poke further trying to understand why it is you have been out of employment so long.
When you land that interview, it’s very important that you make the interviewer see that you are ready to hit the ground running.
Talk about your experience like they happened yesterday not two years ago.
Whether you have been out of the job market for a year or even five, talk in a way that makes it seem like you just came from that particular job hours before the interview.
Stop using phrases like “that’s so long ago, I don’t recall” because this won’t get you every far.
Nobody wants to hire you if they are just going to train you again on how to do your job.
In the end
Employment gaps are never pretty on anyone and most of the time end up working against you. However, it’s up to you to make them work for you and it all starts with how you are writing your CV.
A professional CV writer will be in a better position to address such issues and gaps in a way that you can sell yourself in a few seconds to finally clinch that job.