We've recently updated our service. Because of this, you'll need to reset your password to log in. It's quick and easy!Reset Password

How to explain a gap in your CV

Follow our tips to explain your employment gap in a positive way.

What is a career gap?

A career gap is time spent out of work or between jobs. There are many reasons for a gap, and an employer may want to understand how you spent your time away from work.  

We’ll help you explain in a way that sells you as a candidate.

Floating card - How to explain a gap in your CV

Four top tips for explaining a gap in your CV

1. Be honest

Explaining a gap won’t harm your chances of getting a role but lying about it will. You don’t need to go into everything in detail but not mentioning a gap (or worse, lying) will make it sound suspicious. 

2. Be positive

While you may feel compelled to, you don’t need to apologise for a gap in your CV. That saying, how you phrase it is important. “I couldn’t find a job” sounds much more negative than “I decided to take some time to plan my next career move”. 

3. Be smart

Although your CV is a summary of you, it doesn’t need to include everything.  When listing the dates of your employment, it’s OK to just write the year. You also don't need to include reasons for leaving your previous positions if you’d rather not. 

4. Stay busy

If you’re struggling to find work, you can always keep moving forward. You could volunteer somewhere, take an online course or pursue a hobby in depth. This will show employers you can still use your time effectively, even through a period of doubt.