Many of us take time off, for one reason or another, from working. Sometimes, it’s by choice – maybe you were raising a child, travelling, taking care of a sick relative, or went back to school. In other cases, your time off from work may occur because you were laid off or fired and it took time to find a new job.

What is the best way to explain an employment gap on your resume and during a job interview? It depends on the situation and what you did while you weren’t employed.

Do You Need to Mention an Employment Gap on Your Resume?

If you haven’t taken a break yet, you can plan it carefully to ensure a smooth return to the workforce. If the gap was in the past, and you’ve been employed since it occurred, you don’t need to call it out on your resume.

There is no requirement that you include all your experience on a resume. That’s especially true if you’ve been in the workforce for many years. If you are looking for a mid-career position, an entry level role from decades ago is probably not very relevant.

Maintain ambiguity in the information about job period

Generally, in most resume templates you will notice that the job duration period is written in this format –

ABC Company=June 2015 – September 2017

It’s great if you have a job following that, however, if you don’t, you can consider writing it in the years’ format like this –

ABC Company-2015-2017

Now, this is an old trick in the book and if you are a person with lesser than five years of experience you will be asked this question in the interview.

If you have more than ten years of experience then this is often overlooked. However, you should note that the career gap should be less than a year; otherwise this trick is not going to work!

Use formatting to your advantage

Formatting is one of the most important elements of a job resume. An ideal tool for making a well-formatted resume is to use Resume Buddy, it has more than 25 resume templates that are suitable for all types of work experiences and educational background. You can also use formatting to mask your career gap. Most resume examples highlight both the company name and the duration in bold and then follow up with the career highlights. Instead, you can reduce the font size and put it lower in the order of things.

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