Sample Letter Explaining Gap in Employment

In this article, I will provide a comprehensive guide, including a template, to help you explain employment gaps persuasively and professionally.

Key Takeaways

Key PointsExplanation
Why Address Employment GapsTo reassure employers about your reliability and the continuity of your skills
Structure of the LetterIntroduction, explanation of the gap, and a positive closing statement
Personal TipsBe honest, focus on skills gained during the gap, and maintain a positive tone
Example SituationsFamily care, further education, personal health, travel, and voluntary work
Template OverviewA clear and concise template to customize based on your unique situation

Why Address Employment Gaps?





Addressing employment gaps is essential to reassure employers about your reliability and the continuity of your skills. By proactively explaining these gaps, you can mitigate potential concerns and present yourself as a transparent and trustworthy candidate. 

My experience has shown that honesty and a positive approach can significantly impact the outcome of your job application.

Structure of the Letter

A well-structured letter explaining an employment gap should include the following sections:

  1. Introduction: Briefly introduce yourself and mention the job you are applying for.
  2. Explanation of the Gap: Clearly explain the reason for your employment gap, focusing on any constructive activities or experiences gained during this period.
  3. Positive Closing Statement: Reinforce your enthusiasm for the job and highlight your readiness to contribute to the company.

Personal Tips

Drawing from my extensive experience in writing these letters, here are some personal tips to keep in mind:

  • Be Honest: Truthfulness is paramount. Employers appreciate honesty and can often detect insincerity.
  • Highlight Skills: Emphasize any skills or experiences gained during your employment gap that are relevant to the job.
  • Maintain a Positive Tone: Focus on the positive aspects of your gap and how it has prepared you for your new role.

Example Situations


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Here are some common situations that may lead to an employment gap and how to address them:

  1. Family Care: “I took time off to care for a family member, during which I developed strong organizational and time management skills.”
  2. Further Education: “I pursued further education to enhance my knowledge and skills in [specific field], which makes me better suited for this role.”
  3. Personal Health: “I took a break to focus on my health and am now fully recovered and eager to contribute to your team.”
  4. Travel: “I traveled extensively to gain new perspectives and cultural experiences that have enriched my problem-solving abilities.”
  5. Voluntary Work: “I dedicated time to voluntary work, which helped me develop leadership and project management skills.”

Template Overview

Below is a template you can customize to fit your specific situation:


[Your Name]
[Your Address]
[City, State, ZIP Code]
[Email Address]
[Phone Number]
[Date]

[Hiring Manager’s Name]
[Company Name]
[Company Address]
[City, State, ZIP Code]

Dear [Hiring Manager’s Name],

I am writing to express my interest in the [Job Title] position at [Company Name] as advertised. With a strong background in [relevant field], I am excited about the opportunity to contribute to your team. I would like to address a period of employment gap in my resume and provide context for this time.

From [start date] to [end date], I took a break from my professional career to [brief explanation of the reason]. During this period, I [mention any constructive activities, skills gained, or relevant experiences]. This experience has not only [explain how it has positively impacted you] but also prepared me to excel in the [Job Title] role.

I am now fully committed to re-entering the workforce and bringing my expertise in [specific skills or field] to [Company Name]. I am confident that my unique experiences and skills will make a valuable contribution to your team. Thank you for considering my application. I look forward to the possibility of discussing my application further.

Sincerely,

[Your Name]

Popular Questions About “Letter Explaining Gap in Employment”

Q: How do I start a letter explaining a gap in employment? 

Answer: I always begin by briefly introducing myself and the position I’m applying for. This sets a professional tone and immediately ties the explanation to my job application.

Q: Should I be completely honest about my employment gap? 

Answer: Yes, honesty is crucial. In my experience, employers appreciate transparency and it builds trust right from the start.

Q: How detailed should my explanation be? 

Answer: Keep it concise but informative. I find that focusing on key reasons and relevant skills gained during the gap is most effective.

Q: What if my gap was due to personal health issues? 

Answer: I acknowledge the health break briefly and emphasize my full recovery and readiness to contribute. This approach shows resilience and responsibility.

Q: Can I mention voluntary work or travel during my gap? 

Answer: Absolutely. In my letters, I highlight how these experiences have enriched my skills and perspectives, making me a more well-rounded candidate.

Q: How do I maintain a positive tone in my letter? 

Answer: I focus on the benefits and learning experiences gained during the gap. This positivity reflects my proactive attitude and readiness to return to work.

Q: Is it necessary to address short employment gaps? 

Answer: For shorter gaps, I mention them if directly asked or if they seem significant. I usually keep the explanation brief and straightforward.

Q: How should I close the letter? 

Answer: I close with a strong statement of enthusiasm for the position and confidence in my ability to contribute. This leaves a positive final impression.

Q: What should I avoid mentioning in my letter? 

Answer: I avoid overly personal details or negative reasons. Instead, I focus on constructive activities and skills relevant to the job.

Q: Can I use a generic template for all job applications? 

Answer: While a template is a good starting point, I always customize each letter to reflect the specific job and company. Personalization shows genuine interest and effort.

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