Gaps in employment histories give hiring managers pause. This is okay, if the gaps can be explained well, but if they can’t, hiring managers are likely to think the worst. Often the gaps get attributed to a lack of motivation or skill, or other negatives you don’t want associated with you.
This can also happen to someone who’s stayed in a job for a long time and shown no progress in their career. And for people like this, there often is progress in their career, but it hasn’t been communicated or not communicated well. There’s likely been a change in scope, technology or other proficiency gains over the years that haven’t been spelled out in a resume or social media. It’s time to make all that explicit.
Even if you haven’t had a title change, it’s important to lay out a career progression so hiring managers don’t think you’ve stagnated in your post.
Assessing someone’s ability to be motivated is one of the hardest things a hiring manager can do, and it’s also the most important.
With that in mind, you should make sure your resume does a good job of not just summarizing the work you’ve done but how your motivation has led to growth and improvement and how you want to bring that asset to their organization.
The Big Recession
If you have a gap in your resume from say 2008-2011, most hiring managers will acknowledge this as an unusual period when many jobs were lost through no fault of the employee. If this includes you, then just be clear about why your job was downsized. If your whole department was let go, a hiring manager might ask for a reference to confirm that. Be as prepared as you can be.
“Fake it till you make it” is not going to work with employment gaps. Be honest about them and hit em head on. That doesn’t mean talk about how bad your boss was or really any negative aspect of it. Be as clinical as you can in portraying an objective event that you were a part of. Don’t worry, everyone has to explain these sorts of things, and if you do it well, you will be respected for it.
NextGen is the brainchild of longtime telecom professionals with nearly 50 years of experience and millions of dollars in Telecom Recruiting Services. We focus on establishing long term relationships with our clients and candidates so we can recruit the best and the brightest in the telecom industry. This ‘quality over quantity’ approach is at the heart of everything we do and has resulted in successful job placements at Fortune 1000 firms worldwide.