01 September 2013

Employment Gap Explanation in Interview

Posted by NcrJobPortal.in  |  at   Sunday, September 01, 2013

At some point or the other, each one of us has to probably take a detour from our professional lives! It’s either to deal with the aftermaths of a layoff, or take a maternity leave to have a baby or simply to take care of a sick family member. 

The reasons can be way too many that can propel you to take a hiatus in your career. However, employers can get reasonably worried about your absence from the business world for some time. So how do you put their concerns to rest? And how do you address the missing years in your resume? Just read on to know the smarter ways to explain your time off:

Maintain Transparency

For starters, it is absolutely imperative to acknowledge the gaps in your CV. Don’t be tempted to gloss over the holes by deleting them as they are quite apparent and only lead to an distasteful interview experience. You don’t have to divulge into the details, the bare facts are enough assuming they are reasonable. For example “a member of the family was unwell and I was in charge for taking care of them. Once they were healthier I started looking for a job again.” This answer is to the point and leaves no room for confusion. Don’t treat your downtime as something you are ashamed of. If it’s relevant, discuss any freelancing or volunteer work that you have done or any education that you have pursued during that gap.

Put a positive spin on the circumstances

Always remember that your CV is merely a way to sell yourself to your potential employers. There is always a chance to put a ‘positive spin’ on the circumstances mentioned above. For example; if you have taken a break for travelling, try focusing on the positive experiences you had during the time particularly if they had any relevance to the job you are applying for. Talk about a new foreign language that you learnt while travelling or the knowledge that you acquired of different cultures, customs and traditions. Small talk like these can prove to be quite vital and can be great value additions to organizations that operate globally.

Tell them that you didn’t switch off

The world doesn’t stand still when you’re out of the rat race, so it’s quite important to focus on your accomplishments during your time off. If you took part in classes or leadership activities like coaching a soccer team, bring it up and explain how it added to your personality. Tell employers how you stayed abreast with the latest industry trends by reading industry magazines and blogs. 
Talk about what all you did in the interim and sell it to people who matter. Trying to explain an employment gap during an interview can be pretty tricky. The best way usually is to deal with the issue in a candid and straight manner. Provide a clear and valid reason for taking the time off if the break was voluntary. 

If you took time off to deal with a particular issue, make it clear that the reason for your hiatus has passed. Unemployment happens! Being transparent about your circumstances gives the employer a clear sense of your honesty and self-confidence -two attributes every employer is always looking for.

source : naukri.com

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