Business News Daily recently came out with an article on 6 interview tips, one of which is to never be “unemployed.” If you’re currently unemployed, this bit of advice can seem like a slap to the face, until you consider what it is they’re advising.
It’s fairly common now for people to be searching for jobs after weeks, months, sometimes years, of unemployment. Furthermore, for a number of people, “unemployed” means any situation where they aren’t working full-time; if you’ve lost a stable job, you can indeed feel unemployed, applying to jobs with a gap on your resume and having difficulty explaining your situation to an interviewer.
But the reason unemployed appears in quotation marks is because the article is asking you to think outside of the box. For one thing, there are more kinds of employment beyond just full-time work. And there are also ways of making good use of the time you’re unemployed to further develop your skills, which makes it much less likely your resume will have a gap. You need to be able to give a credible accounting of how you’ve spent your time so that your resume gap no longer looks like a gap.
Here are some of the ways you can do this:
- There are various forms of freelance and part-time work you could take on. If it’s in your field, so much the better, especially as you’ll have an easier time continuing to hone your skills and network with others. But even if it’s in an outside area, this kind of work may still help you develop professionally, giving you skills you can apply to your field.
- You can take extra classes, learn new skills and receive new certifications, keeping current with your field.
- Some people write e-books, manuals, or articles for specific topics in their field, establishing themselves as experts.
- You can take on a complicated project that demonstrates your innovation, creativity, and skills in coding, web design, or any number of areas.
- Volunteering is another possibility – for instance, providing IT support to a non-profit. You could also help organize events, such as tech meet-ups or code-a-thons, which would again make for excellent opportunities to network.
In short, think of what you could do with your time beyond searching for a job. When it comes to finding a job, you’ll need to face interviewers and show them that there are no real gaps in your resume – that your time has been spent productively beyond the job search. Contact us for additional advice on dealing with any ‘gaps’ in your resume and furthering your professional development even if you haven’t been able to find a stable job.
For more opportunities please visit our Career Portal.