How to justify a gap on your resume in an interview

Whether it’s because you moved to another city, had some health issues or lost your job as a result of the pandemic, you now have an employment gap on your resume that you just can’t seem to know how to properly justify without harming your chances of getting the job you applied for. Well , there’s no need to worry ! We’re here to give you a few tips on what and what not to say to the recruiter to help you get through this challenge as smoothly as possible.

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1/ Be honest 

If you have a period of inactivity on your resume, don’t panic just yet ! A lot of company employees have it too and you are probably not the only candidate to have an employment gap and applying for the job. The best thing you can do here is to mention it clearly on your resume and not try to hide it, recruiters are quick to notice details like this and might find it suspicious that you haven’t brought it up. Make sure to also mention the reason why you were inactive during that time frame to avoid any probing questions on the day of the interview.

2/ Don’t go into too much detail

Being honest is important, but be careful not to say too much ! The interviewer doesn’t need to know everything that went on in your life when you were on a break, writing 1 or 2 sentences to explain why you were inactive during that period of time on your cover letter or your online application is more than enough.The recruiter is not trying to corner you, he mainly wants to have a look at your personality and find out if you are the right person for the position you are applying for. 

3/ Have a positive attitude

If you left a company on bad terms , make sure not to bad-mouth the company or its employees during the interview. Instead, put an emphasis on the missions and the know-how that you’ve acquired while working there. Always keep in mind to try to bring out the best out of all of your experiences, even the bad ones.

Having a positive mindset will aid you tremendously in showing that you’re back on the job market and ready to work again.

4/  Show that you’ve been active

 Not working in a company for a year or longer doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ve been lounging on your couch and procrastinating throughout the entire break.

If you took part in any kind of activity such as volunteerism or academic training, make sure to mention it on your resume. This time frame can prove to be an effective way to sell your proactivity and talk about your values, so use it to your advantage !

5/ Highlight your hobbies and personal interests 

This goes hand in hand with our previous tip. As mentioned before, the recruiter is going to try to figure out your personality to know if you're fit for the job. This is a great opportunity for you to stand out from the rest of the candidates and make a lasting impression on your interviewer. Therefore, pay extra attention while writing the "Interests" and "Extra-professional activities" sections on your resume and make sure to let your personality shine through them !

"Yasmine KHALIDI" 1 octobre, 2020
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