Frustrations with HR and Work Gaps

(31 Posts)
WendyLovesWine Fri 24-Jan-20 23:08:15

I've had large gaps in my employment history from maternity leave obviously...and every time I apply to new jobs, it's the same ol' rejection story. So devastated from the lack of understanding from hiring managers and recruiters. Anyone experience similar frustrations? It's driving me insane. Please send help

OP’s posts: |
unfortunateevents Sat 25-Jan-20 00:52:21

How do you know it's your maternity leave which is leading to these rejections? How many gaps do you have and with how much experience in between each one?

dimsum123 Sat 25-Jan-20 09:46:56

Are you in a job at the moment?

EBearhug Sat 25-Jan-20 11:34:01

Does your CV say that you have gaps for caring responsibilities, or do you have unexplained gaps? Maternity leave should be fine, but if it's unexplained, they won't know you weren't serving a custodial sentence or something. It might not be obvious to them it's for maternity.

TheMemoryLingers Sat 25-Jan-20 11:37:49

If you were still employed, but on maternity leave, do you need to show a gap?

Scarsthelot Sat 25-Jan-20 11:42:22

I am a little bit confused

Do you mean you left each job when taking mat leave then returned to another job? Have you had many kids?

If it's the gaps, it probably just looks like you leave jobs and are out of work for a while each time.

BrokenLogs Sat 25-Jan-20 11:42:22

If there are gaps of years, that's very different to a maternity leave gap, which as pp said, if you're employed you don't need to mention.

Also, how you're explaining the gaps is important. Short and informative, nothing too personal.

WarIsPeace Sat 25-Jan-20 11:42:58

If you were on maternity leave while employed and went back to the job after ML you were employed the whole time, it's not a gap?

If you left work for a while to look after the children /be a sahp you were on a career break for caring responsibilities.

I'm wondering if you have made your career history look worse than it needs to?

Berrymuch Sat 25-Jan-20 11:43:39

Do you have explain the gaps? Are you applying for roles which match your current level of experience etc? As most don't give feedback for unsuccessful applications it's hard to know the actual reason, have you asked any of them?

Justajot Sat 25-Jan-20 11:50:14

Are you applying for roles which require security clearance or working with vulnerable people?

I have recruited people with gaps in their work history and as long as the explanations are plausible and reasonable, I am fine with it.

lljkk Sat 25-Jan-20 12:36:07

I had 8 yrs as SAHM & didn't find it the gap to be an insurmountable obstacle to getting back into work. I did go back to my original industry (but different department) ultimately. Maybe open-mindedness about gaps varies by industry.

flowery Sat 25-Jan-20 13:10:55

As others have said-

Do you know it’s the gaps that are causing the rejection or are you assuming?

Maternity leave doesn’t “obviously” cause gaps at all- a decision to leave your job does (or redundancy etc).

MarinaMarinara Sat 25-Jan-20 13:24:19

Did you leave your job rather than going back after mat leave?

If not, I wonder if you are perhaps going into too much detail in your CV? Mine for example would just say “employed by (company x) from 2010 (for example) to date”. There would be two mat leaves in there but I would not need to mention them.

If so, have you just left a gap completely? If so it would not be obvious to me that it was mat leave actually. I am not in HR so maybe I am being a bit dense but I would assume a period of unemployment so might be better to address the gap head on. Mat leave if you are comfortable saying so, “career break for caring responsibilities” if not. And highlight any voluntary roles or courses or anything?

TSSDNCOP Sat 25-Jan-20 13:29:36

I’m in HR. Mat leave with an employer is continuous service. Gaps can be explained eg career break caring responsibilities. You can also contact the recruiter usually to discuss gaps before you submit an application.

BirdieFriendReturns Sat 25-Jan-20 19:09:55

Most of the jobs I have worked at have required DBS checks or security clearance so it’s obvious I’ve not been in prison!

I think employers don’t like the fact that you have taken a few weeks/months off. Perhaps it implies that one isn’t desperate for work and makes one look less pliable?

TSSDNCOP Sat 25-Jan-20 21:19:09

Not strictly true. In education for instance you need to know about a persons employment history to ensure you’re operating within the safer recruitment guidelines, also because it impacts continuous employment for things like redundancy, pension, holiday etc

BirdieFriendReturns Sat 25-Jan-20 21:43:16

What if like me, you enjoy having weeks/months off between jobs pottering around at home? How do I “prove” that I’ve not been in prison or whatever apart from a clean enhanced DBS check?

Employers don’t seem to like that your life isn’t all about work or that one doesn’t necessarily need to work full time!

TSSDNCOP Sat 25-Jan-20 21:44:16

Register your next DBS certificate Withy the DBS Update service.

TSSDNCOP Sat 25-Jan-20 21:45:23

It’ll cost you £13 quid a year and your certificate is live to anyone you give permission to.

ChicCroissant Sat 25-Jan-20 21:46:12

Why is your maternity leave showing as a gap? Did you have a series of short-term jobs? What did you say about the gap, because it's not clear from your post why that would be the issue with you being shortlisted or appointed (I used to work in HR).

YeahNahWhal Sun 26-Jan-20 05:56:22

I've stopped putting dates on my CV, instead saying how many years I spent at each employer. Ageism is real, and having work experience in the 1990s when colleagues were toddlers is becoming an issue. Would that help cover your gaps?

Scarsthelot Sun 26-Jan-20 06:17:07

If you take a few weeks off in between jobs, that's not an issue. You put the month and year you leave a job.

So left in July 2019, started new job in august 2019.

Take a few months off in between jobs needs an explanation. Because those are signs that someone just leaves jobs when they fancy, dont have anything to go, bad planning, especially if the time you have been in the jobs is short. Not always, but often.

Not sure why OP is putting gap of mat leave.

I can only assume she had a job (perhaps for a short period) instead of going on mat leave she left. Returned to work a fee months later yo a different employer and repeated the process again. A few times. If OP had a job, then went on mat and decided not to return and went elsewhere to work, there wouldnt be a gap.

Gaps bother people more when the periods of employment are also short.

I took 9 months off. I was getting divorced moving area, had 2 kids. Not one job showed showed shock at the gap. I hot interviews for the jobs I applied for and all the Interviewers though it was an excellent idea.

KatherineJaneway Sun 26-Jan-20 06:22:00

What length of gaps are we talking about and when?

If you haven't worked in the past five years for example then yes, that will be a definitive issue. Are you going for roles you've carried out before?

Sassanacs Sun 26-Jan-20 07:32:41

I'm in the same boat OP and it's seriously affecting my MH. It's ironic as I'm a qualified HR practitioner and I'm now going for the next level qualification because I am being rejected left, right and centre.... various reasons such as: too qualified, not qualified enough, assumptions that I'll be off when a 'better offer' comes along, I've been MIA for a (short!) while which apparently means I'm incapable, extended mat leave not an issue (apparently) but then twice I've been passed over for someone who is currently working in a similar role hmm.

I've been blatantly discriminated against and I've had to make two formal complaints to the organisations because of their awful recruitment practices. Yes lucky escape, but it's bloody exhausting and soul destroying when you just want a sodding job.

Since being made redundant in 2015 I've had a sketchy employment history compared to a steady career climb prior. I've done EVERYTHING I can to make myself more marketable. I tailor every application to the job inc supporting statements. I've considered all hours/job levels/industries that I could possibly work in and I still cannot get a job.

I am beyond frustrated and been brought to tears on many occasions as I cannot do any more than I have so at this point it's purely going to be down to luck. I am qualified with a diverse skill set and yet I'm losing out to first jobbers because I would cost an organisation more money simply because I'm entitled to the NLW...

Having said all that, you've really just got to believe in yourself and keep pushing on.

Lazypuppy Sun 26-Jan-20 12:18:59

Maternity leave isn't a gap? I'm confused.

My cv says i've worked in my current role for 3 years (1 year of that was maternity, but no one knows that)

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