Most job seekers know that having recent gaps in their work histories make it harder to position themselves as strong candidates. However, by openly discussing why they’re there, it’s possible to overcome the challenges gaps often create.
Using the correct approach is essential, ensuring you can reassure the hiring manager that the gap isn’t problematic. Here’s a look at how to explain gaps in your work history the right way during an interview.
Briefly Touch on Why There’s a Gap
Being honest about the reason behind the gap in your work history is essential, even if it’s related to a termination. In many cases, hiring managers will learn about your exit from any past jobs, at least in general. As a result, lies are almost always discovered, and those hurt your chances of getting selected or keeping a job post-offer.
When you discuss why there’s a gap, keep the description brief. You can simply state that you were laid off, left due to a health issue, quit to pursue opportunities that were a better fit, or were terminated.
Quickly Pivot the Conversation
After briefly touching on the reason for the gap, it’s time for a quick pivot. Depending on why you left that position, you may need to vary your approach.
For voluntary quits to pursue new opportunities or layoffs, focus on your enthusiasm to find a different job. Discuss how what you learned in past roles prepared you for new challenges and your excitement about furthering your career.
If you quit due to a health issue (either a personal one or one involving a family member), let the hiring manager know the situation is resolved. You don’t have to share details about the condition or care required. Just let the hiring manager know that the cirumstances leading to your exit from the workforce are no longer an issue and that you’re enthusiastic about rejoining the workforce.
For terminations, it’s wise to discuss lessons learned. Keep the tone positive, outlining how the experience opened your eyes and created beneficial change that makes you a stronger employee.
Discuss How You Remained Current
Another way to make a gap in your work history less problematic is to talk about steps you took during that period to improve as a professional. Mention any skill-building activities or training you participated in while you weren’t employed. Also, mention how you stayed on top of industry trends and developments, as that helps demonstrate your passion for the field.
By discussing these details, you’re giving the hiring manager additional peace of mind. As a result, they may view the gap in your work history as less problematic, particularly if you work in an industry that changes quickly.
Contact A.R. Mazzotta – Connecticut’s Top Employment Agency
Ultimately, using the approach above can help you effectively explain gaps in your work history and position yourself as a stronger candidate. If you’d like to learn more, contact us to see how A.R. Mazzotta can offer additional guidance. Additionally, if you’re looking for a new job, ask how our team can assist with your job search, or visit our website to check out our open positions today.