If you’re returning to the workforce after spending time as a homemaker, you might feel intimidated by the obvious hole in your resume. While a gap in your work history might normally send up a red flag, you can typically spin your experience as a growth and learning opportunity. Show the recruiter how homemaking prepared you for the full-time position you seek.
You might not commute an hour each day to work, or spend your day in front of a computer screen, but that doesn’t mean you didn’t stay busy full-time. Raising a family often requires the same amount of time and energy as a professional position, if not more. Break down your roles and list your job duties just as you would for a corporate job. For example, describe how you managed the family’s budget to show how you saved more than you spent every month. Also, mention responsibilities such as planning the family’s schedule or assisting children with homework.
Demonstrate to employers that during your time as a homemaker, you acquired knowledge and honed skills directly related to the job for which you’re applying. Review the qualifications for the position, and make a list of everything that matches these requirements. Include a skills section at the top of your resume that lists these abilities. For example, if the job requires excellent organizational skills, note that you managed the schedules for all five people in your family and handled everything from doctor appointments to piano lessons.
Instead of focusing on the fact that you worked as a homemaker, describe projects and activities that you undertook. If you took classes, list those which are relevant to the job. Discuss what you learned and how it applies to the job you seek. If you volunteered for community organizations, charitable groups or projects at your children’s school, list those as well. Highlight positions held and note your responsibilities. For example, if you served as a fundraising chairperson, describe how you reached out to the community to solicit donations and how you increased contributions by 50 percent.
If you held part-time, temporary or freelance jobs during this time, you don’t need to point out that you primarily worked as a homemaker. Instead, create a section titled “Freelance Work” or “Additional Work Experience.” List any relevant positions you held, even one-time projects and short-term gigs. Describe your job duties and discuss how these jobs resemble the one for which you’re applying. If you’re seeking a public relations position, for example, mention that you wrote press releases, or other promotional materials, for high-profile corporate clients.