• By Check-a-Salary
  • Posted Friday 26 th November 2021

Career Break CV Template

If you are searching for a new job following a lengthy career break, it can be hard to know where to start when writing or updating your CV. Knowing how to address a period of non-employment on your career break CV will help you get hired.

Whether your career break was due to family commitments, illness, study, travel, or something else, the biggest CV mistake is to ignore it.

Here we explain how to address a break in employment, and our career break CV template demonstrates how our advice might appear on paper.

Reaffirm your desire to work in your personal statement

A typical personal statement is a professional profile that describes who you are, what you offer, and where you would like to see your career go. You can use this section to explain a career gap, but it should not form the basis of your personal statement. A single sentence will suffice, and you can mention your career goals in the same sentence, so all sentences have a positive vibe.

Remember that your introduction should not be too long; around 150 words or four to five lines is plenty for most professions.

What to include within a personal statement on a CV

Skills before job history

Your key skills can appear before your work history on your CV, which distracts the reader's attention away from the career gap. We recommend pulling out the skills the recruiter mentions in their job description and prioritising these. Where possible, provide an example of how you have used your abilities and their positive outcomes.

How to identify the skills I should include on my CV


Employment history and career gap

Your employment history should run in reverse-chronological order, with your most recent position appearing first. You can address gaps by inserting a statement such as ‘career break took to homeschool children, 2015 - 2017.’

If your last date of employment is many years ago, or you held many jobs, you don’t need to go into great detail about the roles. You can omit positions held more than 15 years ago if they are not relevant or were junior positions.

Volunteering for a local charity or business is a proactive approach to building recent work experience. These actions are an excellent way to show hiring managers you are committed and ready to return to work.

How much job history should I include on my CV?


Your academic achievements should include GCSE (or equivalent) level education onwards. Put your most recent education first, along with your grades or predicted results, if you have returned to study.

If you have higher education, such as diplomas, degrees, or professional certifications, you can summarise your GCSEs to a number and their grade range. You might find it advantageous to expand on course modules if they are relevant to your desired position.

What education and qualifications should I include on my CV?

Hobbies & interests

If your resume lacks work experience or education, hobbies and interests can be invaluable but otherwise optional. Relevant hobbies to highlight are those that require the same skills as those mentioned in the employer’s job description. For example, you may be an athlete, which entails discipline for training and organisation for healthy meal planning.

Should I include hobbies on my CV?


Your employer will likely request references if they make a job offer. However, before this stage of recruitment, you do not need to provide the details of your references. A line saying that references are available on request is sufficient unless the job advert asks explicitly for them at the job application stage.

Should I include references on my CV?


Career Break CV advice

Our career advice pages and CV templates will help you prepare for job applications, interviews, and reentering the workplace. Our CV templates are provided as examples, and you should tailor them to each job application, using your experiences, achievements, and skills.

CV template examples



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