How To Pad A Resume
How To Pad A Resume – There are a few oft-repeated truths when it comes to resumes and the job search, and one of them is that resume blanks are bad. But this is not always the case! If you take a few months – or even a few years – between jobs, volunteer or otherwise, it doesn’t have to be a big deal.
By itself, the resume gap doesn’t matter. Hiring managers aren’t intentionally screening applicants because they haven’t worked every day of their lives. The reason employers notice resume gaps is because they raise questions.
How To Pad A Resume
Here is a list of common questions recruiters have about job openings. It all basically boils down to one thing: Is there a gap in your resume because you’re trying to hide something? Otherwise, you have nothing to worry about.
How To List Gaps On A Resume (without Making It A Big Deal)
Employment vacancies less than six months are not likely to stand. Six months is a very common time frame for a job search, so you don’t need to explain a short vacancy either.
Hiring managers don’t live in a bubble – they know people are struggling right now. If you’ve been fired, laid off, or had trouble finding work in the past year, no reasonable employer would hold that against you.
If you have a single gap on your resume, it’s unlikely that a series of gaps will raise the same red flags. As with anything on your resume, context is important – if there’s a single gap in your resume that you can explain, most employers won’t care.
What is a good reason for the employment gap? Basically, anything is not work related. If you’ve relocated, had a baby, or taken time off for a family or health emergency, those are all good reasons unrelated to your work performance. A career change can be another good reason, especially if you use that time to go to school or update your skill set.
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Employment vacancies are likely to be red flags if none of the above is true. If your resume shows a pattern of extended, work-related vacancies, you should explain in more detail than you should. It’s still not necessarily forbidden, but you’ll have a harder time explaining that you quit your last job without notice than explaining that you’re taking time off to care for an elderly relative.
Here are some examples of common reasons why you might have a gap in your resume and how to deal with it.
If you have a single, easily explained gap in your resume, the best strategy is to explain it. Your cover letter is a good place for this. You don’t need to justify an entire paragraph—a sentence or two is usually enough.
You can also list a career break on your resume as part of your work experience. This allows you to go into a little more detail about what you did during the break, which is ideal if you’ve accomplished something you want to highlight during this time. This should generally only be done if you are currently in a gap.
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Appropriate accomplishments may include freelance projects, online courses, or volunteer work. List these in the same way you would your regular word experience, using quantitative, action-oriented bullet points. Be sure to include keywords as well — anything that will help you get past the initial screening stage of the job you’re applying for.
If you are currently in the employment gap, ask yourself if there is anything you can do now to improve yourself professionally. It doesn’t have to be full-time – even doing something a few hours a week is worth including on your resume. Here are some ideas for activities you can pursue:
Being fired (as opposed to being fired) is not a red flag for employers. This goes double if you’ve been laid off in the last year or so – hiring managers are well aware of how tough the current job market is.
In the application for your previous job, you can clearly state that you were laid off due to COVID-19. If the layoff is due to something else, such as a downsizing, you should also briefly explain that. Use your bullet points to highlight your major accomplishments and projects you’re working on before the layoff — you want to emphasize that you’re a strong performer and that the quality of your work isn’t an issue. Here are some ways to explain the circumstances of a layoff:
Interview Cartoon # 5012
Major life changes such as having a child, caring for a family member, interstate or international relocation, or personal illness or injury are valid reasons for a career gap that are unlikely to raise further questions. The best way to deal with these is to explain the situation clearly without going into too much detail.
If you are caring for family members, it is best to keep the entry short. The exception is if you demonstrate transferable skills related to your career, such as moving into a healthcare or administrative role. In that case, you can add a little more detail about the exact nature of those skills.
If a gap is caused by personal injury or illness, it is important for employers to ensure that it will not happen again. You can fix it with a short sentence that says the problem is completely solved.
You should avoid going into specifics, especially when it comes to mental health. The sad fact is that some employers are still prejudiced against mental illness and you are not legally required to disclose any details.
Standard Resume Margins [proper Margin Size For A Resume]
If you’ve taken some of our suggestions and are busy pursuing further education, freelancing or volunteering, you’ll definitely want to highlight that on your resume. In fact, if you’re doing any of these things, your resume gap might not be a gap at all.
How to fill a gap in your resume by highlighting freelance or contract work you’ve done in your spare time
If you’ve completed a series of freelance or contract projects, you can list these without cluttering up your resume. Grouping them under a single job title in this way is a good way, and it also allows you to emphasize your most impressive or relevant achievements. Here are more tips on how to list short-term or temporary work on your resume.
If you’re not sure if you’ve listed your freelance/contract projects or volunteering the right way, upload your resume to the tool below. This is a good way to check if you’ve used your temp work to address any gaps in your resume.
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Not all work experience is paid! Volunteering is a great way to fill any gaps in regular employment. Listing volunteer work on your resume demonstrates your involvement in the community, shows passion for your chosen industry, and can create some truly resume-worthy accomplishments.
If you took a break from working full-time to pursue further education, it’s not really a career break — you can list that in your education section (it should be at the top of your resume if it’s your most recent or relevant experience). Even if you’ve only taken one or two online or short courses to try to stay relevant, it’s still worth including, especially if you’re developing expertise in an area related to the job you’re applying for.
If you’re not sure what skills you need to develop, use the tool below to get a list of skills relevant to the job you’re applying for.
If you’re struggling to write your own resume from scratch, why not check out our ready-made resume templates? Here’s a sample resume you can use as a starting point when referring to a career break:
John Layfield Quote: “i Don’t Have To Pad My Resume. Normal People Are Astounded By My Resume, Because Normal People Never Let Their Dreams Ge…”
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