/ Asked by Jill
What is the best way to explain "gaps" in my work history when I was unemployed?
Answered by Judith, Hiring Expert at Verizon, on Friday, February 28, 2014
I believe that honesty is the best ingredient in your interviewing process to hold on to - so I strongly encourage you to go ahead and explain to your interviewers that you were unemployed but actively engaged in finding a position that was suitable and allowed you to bring value to your future employer. Be sure to then add in your response some of the highlights that make you a strong candidate even when you've had to persevere through periods of unemployment or gaps.  Also, don't be afraid to talk about part time work (small or large) you engaged in during that time period - it shows your willingness to think outside of the box and tackle new challenges while searching for a new role.
Answered by Ellen, Hiring Expert at Hospira, on Monday, March 3, 2014
I would be honest in the interview or in your cover letter.  This is very common with our economy.  Many individuals have been in transition and have gaps in employment.  All you have to do is explain when you were impacted and how long you have been out of work. 

Hope this helps.
Answered by Siobhan, Hiring Expert at Accenture, on Monday, March 3, 2014
Employers are used to seeing employment gaps on resumes for various reasons such as uncertain economic times however, if you feel that your employment gaps are very noticeable, you may use your cover letter to explain your situation. In addition, in your resume highlight other activities you were involved in during the gap where you were able to apply and/or grow relevant skills, such as volunteer work, community involvement, training, etc. Best of luck on your job search! - Laura, Accenture campus recruiter
Answered by Stephanie, Hiring Expert at AT&T Inc., on Tuesday, March 4, 2014
Did you volunteer during this time? Raise children? Obtain certifications or other education? Your goal will be to highlight for hiring managers how you continued to remain an active, productive problem-solver during your periods of unemployment. In what ways did you add value to an organization, group of people, or even yourself during your unemployment? You don’t need to list these activities on your resume if you don’t want to, but when asked about it in an interview be prepared to respond with concrete examples of how you contributed to XYZ organization while unemployed or sharpened your skills with courses, etc. As far as “explaining gaps” – most employers recognize the state the economy has been in over the last several years and won’t ding a person for the downsizing efforts of their past employers.
Answered by Megan, Hiring Expert at Cardinal Health, on Wednesday, April 9, 2014
Be honest! Whether you were laid off, needed time away to take care of an ill parent or simply did not feel your company was a culture fit, be genuine with your recruiter/hiring manager. What is important is how you approach the explanation. What did you do while you were unemployed? Did you take a class? Read-up on current literature to spiff up your technical skills? Volunteer? Travel? Be prepared to share what you did while you were not working rather than what you did not do.
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