Mind the career gap

Attending a job interview can be a daunting task especially if you have gaps in your employment history. Although having some gaps in your CV is understandable, they are sometimes seen as red flags to potential employers.

There are many causes why someone has gaps in their employment history. Knowing how to address these gaps can be a challenge, yet failing to do so might mean missing out on your perfect role.

Read on for our tips on bridging the employment gaps in your interview.

Prepare to talk about it

During your interview, there’s a strong possibility your prospective employer will ask about the gaps in your CV, especially if they’re recent. Preparing a response ahead of time establishes a poised answer and ensures your career break is seen in a positive light. Even if you feel slightly awkward answering questions about your career break, providing an explanation is better than leaving it to your interviewer’s imagination. Employers understand that life happens and to avoid a burn out, sometimes you need to recharge before tackling the next step in your career.

Be honest in explaining the gap

Whatever your reasons may be, giving an honest comment regarding your unemployment ⁠shows you possess courage and integrity. Maintaining your principles is important when going through job searches as roles come and go, but being known as trustworthy or disingenuous lasts a lifetime. Providing a clear and concise account of your employment gaps, assuages any worries your future employer may have. By briefly acknowledging the gaps early on, you’ll be able to focus on presenting your employability skills and expertise.

Add a positive spin

There is always something positive you can take away from your career break. Instead of focussing solely on the gaps, try to identify the skills and experiences you’ve obtained along your journey. Before heading to your interview, outline your replies to show personal and professional growth during your time away. You could also take the opportunity to demonstrate transferable skills you’ve acquired which improves your chances of persuading possible employers you’re the right fit for the role.

Stay on top of things

Even if you’ve been out of the game for a while, never lose track of what’s happening in your given industry. Knowing about the latest developments in the area you’re applying for, will curb any doubts your interviewer might have and highlights how quickly you’ll adapt once you start working. When working on your CV, concentrate your efforts on communicating key credentials, skills and experiences on why you would be amazing for the role. In doing so, you’ve assured your interviewer you’re interested and qualified for the position even if you’ve not been formally employed.

While answering questions about any period of unemployment can be uncomfortable, know that you’re not alone. Being prepared for whatever comes your way and having confidence in the skills you’ve attained during the break can aid in bridging the gap. Don’t let gaps in your CV detract from your qualifications and damage your employability.


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