How to Explain a Layoff on Your Resume
If you are on the hunt for a new job thanks to a layoff you may be wondering how you should explain that layoff on your resume. While layoffs are never a good thing when they happen to individuals, in the turbulent world of business, they are somewhat the norm. Therefore, most potential employers will not view your layoff as a negative when they are considering hiring you.
Keep in mind that there is a big difference between being part of a layoff, which is typically due to a financial reason, and being fired, which can result for a number of reasons. However, in either case, this can cause an employment gap in your resume which may not look so good. While you should try to shore up any gaps as quickly as you can, you may or may not want to include the reasons that you left any job on your resume.
If you do decide to explain on your resume that you were in fact laid off then you should do so in the following manner:
• Truthfully: Never lie on any portion of your resume, including any explanations you give for a layoff. You never know who knows who in today’s tight knit business world and if you lie about the circumstances of your layoff, you are likely to be caught. In the end, lying looks much worse than being laid off.
• Concisely: If you feel that you want to explain your layoff, so in a clear and concise manner. Don’t write a book, just a sentence or two to explain the circumstances.
• Accurately: Be sure that you give accurate dates and details if you choose to explain your layoff. As with any other information on your resume, it is important to get all the details right. This will avoid you looking like a fool due to inaccuracies on your resume.
• Professionally: Save the ‘woe is me’ and simply state what happened. If you try to make it seem like the world is against you, a likely result will be a potential employer who is turned off.
You can also take the approach of explaining the employment gap in your resume. Instead of just explaining the reasons behind your layoff, explain what you have done in the meantime. Maybe you went back to school or maybe you increased your volunteer work. By putting down what you have done since the layoff, the potential employer can see that you have not simply been sitting around stagnant while awaiting another job opportunity to pop up.
What is most important is to be able to explain thoroughly what happened in regards to the layoff when you do in fact go in for a job interview. Therefore, you need to be sure that whatever you write down as far as an explanation goes on your resume, that your story inside the interview matches it. Keep in mind though, potential employers understand that layoffs are part of the business world game and as long as you explain yourself in a professional manner, everything will likely be fine.