Executive Resumes & Career Transition Strategies Blog

Reflections of an Executive Resume Writer
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“Long-Time Unemployed Need Not Apply” – Apparently Not So

A November 7 article on RecruitingTrends.com brings some encouragement for those who have been in the job market for an extended period. With our current unemployment rate approaching 10% (and the “real” unemployment plus underemployment rate being something closer to 17-19%), rank-and-file workers and senior executives alike find themselves in the uncomfortable position of dealing with skepticism or dismissal out of hand by potential employers and recruiters. They also find themselves needing to explain a substantial gap on their resume with as positive a spin as possible.

Things appear to be looking up on that front, according to Recruiting Trends. Not only are job sites simmering with more activity than has been seen for a while, 111 recruiters surveyed indicated that a gap in employment does not necessarily destroy your chances of being considered for a position. This is welcome news, indeed, especially after some high-profile press about certain companies’ advertisements specifying that those unemployed longer than six months need not apply.

The article presents the recruiters’ responses as follows:

■ 81% of recruiters will lend leniency to time gaps on the resume

■ 89% of recruiters will look favorably at volunteering as an alternative to career employment to fill in the gap

■ 93% of recruiters were positive on temporary and consultative engagements as a bridge between positions

■ 48% of recruiters would look toward individuals looking to make a significant career change

This makes engaging in some temporary consulting assignments and taking the opportunity to give back in your community on a volunteer basis good career strategies. They will enable you to position your resume more attractively for potential employers’ eyes, and equip you with something positive to say when you do get that coveted interview.