Employers Offer No Clear Consensus on How to Address Employment Gaps


Asked what method job-seekers should deploy to explain gaps in their employment history, respondents to the the 2010 Orange County Resume Survey* offered no strong preferences. About 40.4 percent advise including a statement in the resume’s Work Experience section describing reasons for the gap(s), while 8.3 percent felt this statement should appear at the bottom of the resume. Almost 26.2 percent suggested including a statement in the cover letter describing reasons. A surprising 25 percent advised job-seekers not to include a description of reasons on either the resume or cover letter. Given that three-quarters of surveyed employers want to see some kind of explanation of the reason for the gap(s), it’s wise to include one. We speculate that employers are more interested in the content of such an explanation than where it appears.

*The 2010 Orange County Resume Survey by The Center for Career and Life Development, Saddleback College, Mission Viejo, CA, Eric Hilden, Career Placement Officer, was distributed by email to 2,000+ employer contacts in Orange County and shared online employer contacts in Orange County and shared online via social-networking sites including Linkedin.com and Twitter.