Resumes for Parents Returning to Work
In this article, you will find resume tips for moms and dads returning to the workforce after an hiatus. Job targets include:
- Meeting Planner / Convention Services Representative
- Event Planner / Fundraiser
- Customer Service / Office Manager
- Teacher's Aide / Para-Professional
- Financial Planner
- Customer Service / Account Manager
- Athletic Director / High School Coach
- Medical Billing
If you've been on the mommy track (or daddy track, as the case may be), you've devoted yourself to your family and probably worked harder than if you had held a “real job.” But now that you're ready to get back into the conventional workforce, your challenge is to convince employers that you've got a wealth of skills to offer and are eager to demonstrate your capabilities. If this sounds like you, there are several key things to remember as you prepare your resume and cover letters. Here are just a few tips that you may find helpful:
- Consider a functional format for your resume. This approach will allow you to highlight your past skills, regardless of when you acquired them or how long ago you may have last used them. This also has the advantage of playing down the extended period of time that you have not held a paying job outside the home.
- Show your volunteer experiences with full job descriptions as if they were paying jobs. If you held an officer or advisory board position with the PTA or your daughter's soccer league, you probably logged many hours and performed many organizational or managerial tasks. If you chaired a fundraising campaign at your child's nursery school or at your church, you most likely used a number of skills that can be relevant to your next employer. Be sure to include accomplishments from these volunteer experiences: How much money was raised? What initiative was advanced due to your efforts?
- Lead with your strengths. Depending on your circumstances, your education or recent technical training may be your best asset for the job you are targeting. Even if you haven't completed your degree, it may be advantageous to show that you attended or are currently attending college, especially if your major relates to the targeted job.
- If your technology skills are up to date, be sure to mention them prominently. Are you current on the newest version of MS Office? Have you used QuickBooks or some other accounting software? One concern employers have about hiring employees with any kind of employment gap is that their skills may be outdated or obsolete. If you've stayed current with computer skills or other technical proficiencies, make certain your resume reflects that fact.
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