Do you have a long gap between jobs? Do you wonder what to do while you’re unemployed? Don’t worry! You can fill that time with productive activities. This will reduce the negative perception employers often have of candidates who are unemployed for long periods.

Read our tips on how to fill any employment gap:

    1. Develop yourself
    2. Take online courses to learn new things (visit,,
    3. Grow your skill set and experiences
    4. Invest in professional development
    5. Expand your education
    6. Take a contract job
    7. Take a temporary job
    8. Volunteer
    9. Grow your network and make useful contacts who can help you land a job
    10. Give seminars
    11. Be a guest speaker
    12. Get more training
    13. Attend industry and local events
    14. Create your own online brand or project
    15. Set up all Google tools to maximize your job search
    16. Offer work on micro job sites (e.g.,,


A resume serves as your introduction to recruiters. It answers questions and shows off your qualifications. If you have a gap in employment that’s a potential red flag and should be addressed upfront. An employment gap probably won’t keep you from getting hired, but not explaining it could even mean missing out on finding the perfect role for you.

Throughout your career, you may experience brief or extended periods of unemployment. Maybe you are raising a child, traveling or taking care of a sick relative. It’s also possible that you were laid off or fired and you’re having trouble finding a new job. Explaining these kinds of gaps in employment can be intimidating and tricky.

Fortunately, there are a couple of effective methods on how to fill an employment gap on a resume. Read the following list of tips on how to explain the gap:

  1. Don’t fake things
  2. Be up-front
  3. Don’t be defensive
  4. Don’t dwell on negatives
  5. Focus on strengths
  6. Consider using a different resume format. If you have a number of gaps, the functional resume is ideal
  7. List years instead of months for previous positions (e.g. “2014-2016”)
  8. Let your cover letter explain the gaps
  9. Give meaning to the gap, rather than omit it
  10. Package it nicely
  11. Group freelance work together
  12. Keep your employment history consistent
  13. Use strategic positioning to deemphasize the gap
  14. Include other experience gained during the gap
  15. Emphasize any activities you undertook during the gap to improve your professional standing
  16. Include work related tasks

If you want to write a job-winning resume, check out our new online video course How to Write a Job-Winning Resume.”

How to Write a Job-Winning Resume

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