March 7, 2018

Sreekanth B

Tips To Fill Employment Gap For Long Time Unemployed

When you have been unemployed for a while, gaps in your Resume can naturally start appearing and applying for jobs can seem daunting. Whether you’ve been ill, raised a family or have simply struggled in a tough job market, it can be difficult to explain your absence from the workplace.

So how can you impress employers when you haven’t been in employment for a while? This guide talks you through it.

If you have a long gap between jobs, fill that time with productive activities and include those activities on your resume. Show employers and recruiters your interest in your work and that you are demonstrably up-to date.

Here are Some good tips to Fill the Gap in Job Interview:

Contract work:

There is value in continuing to work, even if you don’t have a permanent, full-time engagement. Contracting is a great way to keep your skills sharp and get exposure to new tools or industries. If you can’t get a contract through a recruiter, consider contracting directly with old clients or partners, or even friends.
The only hitch in this approach is when the engagement is not a real project. Recruiters tend to sniff out bogus resume fluff, and drop candidates very quickly. Remember, their reputation is on the line with each candidate they present. If they are serious about their career, they tend to be very thorough. So make sure you can represent yourself well with regards to your contract jobs have a lengthy project description and results to discuss.

On your resume, you should list these engagements like you would any other. The company name might be yours, but it should be an official company to present it as legitimate. The same bullets on deliverable's and results should be included. Don’t treat this engagement as any less important than the others listed or it will appear less substantial. In reality, you may have learned more in six months working for yourself than any other opportunity in your past. Those accomplishments should be included.

Temporary work:

Temping is another alternative where the projects are shorter, but at least there’s a company representing you and can act as a reference stating all your temp jobs went well. This is important as “short-stints” on a resume can sometimes raise a yellow flag with recruiters concerned with your ability to stick with a company long-term.

It’s important to list these temp jobs in a group under the company representing you so it’s clear they are all part of one overriding contract.


Volunteering is another option. Focus on volunteering in a job that is related to the field of work you are pursuing. For example, if your field is marketing, try to help a non-profit with their marketing materials, strategies, planning, or process.

Some companies are offering non-paid internships that may lead to a permanent position. These need to be weighed carefully. Ask what percentage of interns become full time, paid employees.


Some colleagues I know, who are experts in their field, fill the unemployment gap with guest speaker and writing engagements. They give seminars on all types of subject matter for which they have a strong reputation. This can pay a few bills and build credibility. And of course, lead to valuable networking / contract engagements.

Get more training:

During unemployed periods, it is also advantageous to attend training courses or classes you’ve been meaning to take. Especially in areas that would expand your expertise in new, but related elements of your field. Although, getting up to speed on the latest revision of a software tool may be valuable, it doesn’t add another dimension to your resume. Getting certified (like a PMP for project managers) can also add much-needed credibility and differentiation to your resume.  Before you invest in a certification or degree, scan the job openings on a site like to see how often it is mentioned or, even better, required for some jobs.

Family-related issue required time away from work

One other question that arises regarding gaps in employment: leave of absence to care for a seriously ill family member. When this has happened, t is better to list it in a short entry on your resume or application to account for the time. It addresses the obvious question that arises when it’s not listed,

What were you doing during that time period.

When interviewed, you might be asked about it, but most interviewers stay away from the topic. You should be ready to make it clear that the situation is very unlikely to arise again. Keep in mind this can be an unspoken concern that creeps in if not addressed the question of will you leave your employer again.

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