Career Trends: 3 ways to present your career break positively and land your next job.

4 min read

Edition: March 19, 2022
Curated by the Knowledge Team of ICS Career GPS

During job interviews, talk about your new experiences during your time away from work and highlight the skills that you gained. (Image Credit: Canva)

For long, there has been a stigma surrounding career breaks, despite the myriad of reasons to pursue one — including, but not limited to things like, starting a family, focusing on health and well-being, and chasing passions. 

It’s time we break the stigma and embrace career breaks for what they are: important parts of our career journey and what makes each one of us unique as a professional. 

According to data collected, 64% of people globally say they want more ways to positively represent their career breaks. As for hirers, the conversation is building as well with 44% of hiring managers wanting to know the reason why a candidate took a career break. 

Even so, it can still be intimidating to publicly share your career break story while trying to navigate a return to the workforce.

Here are three ways to leverage your career break as an advantage during job search:

1. Highlight your career break on your LinkedIn profile.

  • Career breaks are not shameful, nor should they be hidden from your professional story.
  • In fact, 51% of hiring managers say they’re more likely to contact an applicant that provided context into their career break. 
  • Tackle the job search head-on with transparency, honesty, and authenticity.
  • You can now add a career break to the experience section of your LinkedIn Profile.
  • There are various options to reflect the type of break you took like caregiving, career transition, health and well-being, and more.
  • Share about new experiences during your time away from work and highlight skills you gained — look for ways to tie them to roles you’re interested in.
  • Be bold and intentional with how impactful your career break was and continues to be.

2. Share your experience and learnings in job interviews.

  • It may be difficult to exude confidence when coming back from a career break.
  • However, hiring managers believe candidates should proactively bring up their career break during the interview and highlight what they learned during that time. 
  • When tackling interviews, focus less on your time away and more on how this has helped you grow, learn valuable skills, or helped you discover a new passion.
  • Start by connecting the dots between what you did during your career break and what you can bring to a particular role as a result.
  • Almost 70% of people say taking a career break helped them gain perspective and figure out what they really want from life.
  • Don’t shy away from telling your story and the unique value your experience can bring at work.

3. Network and seek advice from others who took career breaks.

  • If you have ever taken a career break, you’re not alone.
  • 62% of people have taken a career break at one point or another, so don’t be afraid to reach out to your professional community for help and advice. 
  • Be explicit about your goals by turning on the Open-to Work feature on your LinkedIn Profile, which lets the community know you’re open to new opportunities.
  • If you’re comfortable, share your experience with your network.
  • You never know: sharing your story can inspire others to do the same and bring much-needed attention to this important topic.

51% of hirers believe people who take career breaks can restart their careers at any time.

Have you checked out yesterday’s blog yet?

Education & Career Trends: 5 tips for starting or transitioning to a career in IoT

(Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in the article mentioned above are those of the author(s). They do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of ICS Career GPS or its staff.)

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