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Fireflies posted 2/1/2014 21:32 PM

I'm not sure if my question belongs in NB. If not, I apologize in advance. I'm working on getting my ducks in a row and disentangling myself from WH financially. I'm a PhD scientist, but have been a a SAHM for 4ish years. I know I need to note this gap in my employment history, but how? A friend suggested I include a note on a separate page than my CV that says I was exploring personal goals during this time. But, if I was hiring and saw that I'd think, "this chick was in jail, rehab, doing porn, something bad..." And wouldn't pursue an interview. Any advice?

littlefoggy posted 2/1/2014 22:20 PM

I would put the note but be honest.

Say you were staying home and growing a family. But also say you are recommitting to your career.

I work in the scientific community. There is a thing with women leaving to go be mommy. .. so you have to assuage that...thing...fear...stigma

But... it is also filled with old white guys (no offense) who are old fashioned and like family oriented people. So they will like that you took time to be a mommy.

PhantomLimb posted 2/1/2014 22:43 PM

I'm a PhD in the social sciences... and we wouldn't put an explicit note about a gap, I don't think. At most I might put "family leave" and then explain in an interview that you had kids.

I had a gap for a medical leave and I just let the dates stand for themselves. I don't think anyone looked that hard. As long as the formatting looks good, they look at so many, I think eyes can gloss over.

Good luck!

PhoenixRisen posted 2/1/2014 23:06 PM

Ditto phantom, I wouldn't draw attention to it with a memo or letter. If asked during interview "family leave" will suffice.

I didn't have a work but a 2year void of publications and a supervisor, when looking over my cv and noting a gap in publications, waived it aside with "oh this gap must have been your dissertation" then moved on to address other topics. And while partly true, the gap was more "just had a baby" than dissertation related.

Ive repeatedly seen any mention of children is a kiss of death (or more realistically "a promotion") to women in science fields.

[This message edited by PhoenixRisen at 11:07 PM, February 1st (Saturday)]

cmego posted 2/2/2014 06:26 AM

Well, I was a recruiter for many years. Any gap in employment would jump out to me.

**cue story** I was a health care recruiter, for hospitals, so I would recruit anything from physicians to housekeeping. I scanned hundreds of resumes, maybe thousands. My favorite story was a maintenance tech who had a 5 year gap of employment. I questioned him, and he stated he was "self-employed" during that time. I accepted the answer at face value because he was recommended by someone else in the department, and it wasn't unusual for maintenance guys to have their own "fix-it" businesses.

Anywho, I ran his criminal check…BAM! He was in jail for 5 years, and when questioned, he said that he "didn't think we would check". From that point forward, I always pursued any "gaps" a little further.

From an HR perspective, any gap in employment without a brief explanation is going to jump out at me.

I liked to see "2003-2008, Concentrated on raising my small children", or something.
This shows the employment gap is accounted for, and I (as a recruiter) would follow up during an interview with, "Why are you coming back into the field?"
Which you can respond with, "I wanted to stay home while my children were little, but now that they are older I am ready to focus on my career".

They can't legally ask you about your personal life, so you can skip the divorce, etc. You can throw that in IF you feel that the recruiter/hiring person is sympathetic. But, I hated hearing someone moan on and on about their divorce and how they HAD to work, but didn't really WANT to work.

Just stick with "I enjoyed my time at home with my children, but I am ready to focus on my career now that they are a little older."

Fireflies posted 2/2/2014 10:41 AM

Thanks for the feedback guys.

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