Tuesday, June 6, 2023

How to Describe a Job Gap on a Resume

Must Read
  1. What are employment gaps on resume
  2. Possible reasons for a gap in employment
  3. Tips to explain employment gap on resume
  4. Sample resume with gaps in employment

Many times, we have to make the difficult decision to put your career on wait due to unforeseen circumstances.

However, the real difficulty sets in when you attempt to return to the labour. Every recruiter appears to have read your resume or simply isn’t persuaded. We can help if you are experiencing the same issue.

Here, we’ll walk you through the process of describing a job gap on a resume and provide examples to make it easier for you to grasp.

Let’s start at the top first, though!

What are employment gaps on resume

Employment gaps as the name suggests are the period in your professional career where you weren’t formally employed. It could be voluntary or involuntary and span several months to years.

Possible reasons for a gap in employment

Now, there can be many reasons for the gap in employment, and you have to ensure that it is valid. Here are a few valid reasons for the employment gap on resume.

  • Looking for new opportunities
  • Laid off due to changes in the organization
  • For medical reasons
  • To take care of a family member or similar
  • For higher education
  • Working on acquiring new certifications/licenses
  • For relocation purpose

Tips to explain employment gap on resume

Now that we have the basics covered, let’s take a look at how you can present your reasons for gap in employment on resume.

Be honest

Lying in a job hunt is to be avoided at all cost. So, be honest as the recruiter will find out about it sooner or later and that won’t be a favorable situation.

Instead, if you can properly explain your employment gap on your resume, then there’s a fair chance the recruiter will allow you an opportunity in the interview round.

Remove the outdated information

When did you have an employment gap? Was it in recent times or at a distant past? If it is the latter then omit it as you want to keep the most recent and relevant information in your resume.

Use your time off effectively

Irrespective of the reason for your employment gap, ensure to use the time off effectively. Use it to upskill according to market demands, look out for freelance projects or even start a project of your own. This will show that you weren’t completely detached from work and are aware of the current market trends.

Use a different resume format

You can also opt for a different resume format in case the employment gap exceeds a few months. You can opt for a Functional or Combination resume format as these resume styles put the focus more on your skills.

However, using a different resume format does not imply that you should omit the information altogether.

Never stop learning

When you are suddenly out of work, it can toss you in a whirlwind of procrastination. Instead, use this time to focus on learning new skills. You can take up new courses or even sign up for more market-relevant certifications.

Another idea you can put into action is to start your own project. This will provide you with a thorough learning of how the business works.

Highlight experience gained during the gap if relevant

There are times when you have to take a break from work because of health issues or something more serious.

So, for those who have been in this situation, you can utilize this as work experience if it is relevant to the job role you are looking for.

Omit months if the gap is minor

Now, if the employment gap is minor, you can omit the months in your resume. Here’s an employment gap explanation sample for you to understand better;

In case you have switched from one job to another with a few months gap, you can write it like this,

1. Content writer for ABC Publishing 2019-2022

2. Senior content writer for XYZ Ltd 2022- present

Sample resume with gaps in employment

Still confused about how to cite your reasons for gap in employment? Here is a sample resume with career break to help you draft your own!

Ankita Singh,

Account executive,



Resume Summary

In my 2+ years as an Account executive, I have focused on building diverse client relationships. In my years of experience, I have a record of 97% positive feedback and my eye for detail helps me to see and create business opportunities to increase profit.

Work Experience:

  1. Content Writer at ABC Organization (Dec 2020- April 2022)


Insert your responsibilities under the role.


  • Received “Best Content executive- June 2021” Award
  • Received Leadership Award for Outstanding Performance

2. Career Hiatus (2022- present)

Took a career break to provide round-the-clock care to my mother

  • Completed 7 freelance projects
  • Acquired certification in Content marketing

Freelance Experience:

Successfully worked on blogs for the following industries;

  1. Tech
  2. Travel
  3. Local entertainment reviews


Technical skills:

  1. Salesforce
  2. Account planning
  3. Budgeting
  4. Efficiency & organizing
  5. Research

Soft skills:

  1. Leadership
  2. Public speaking
  3. Excellent written
  4. Verbal communication


  1. Masters of Arts in English from ADF University (2015-2017)
  2. Bachelor of Arts in English from SDH College (2017-2019)


  1. Google Digital Garage: Digital Marketing Certification (May 2022)
  2. HubSpot Content Marketing Certification (June 2022)


We hope you found these tips to explaining employment gap on a resume resourceful.

Remember, no matter the situation, always state the truth on your resume as fibbing will only land you in a hotter soup.

Hopefully the sample resume with gaps in employment will clear all your confusion and help you draft a seamlessly perfect resume.

Also, do not forget to proofread before sending the document!

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