Question: I have taken several years out of the workforce to care for my children. How should I address that in my resume? Can I put parenting under my work experience?
Yes, you absolutely can. Parenting is one of the toughest jobs out there and though you may not be paid, you are certainly doing amazing, important work.
When building your resume, look at the job posting and then think about what skills being a parent has taught you that relate to the job. Is is patience? An ability to coordinate multiple schedules or meet deadlines? Maybe it is the ability to stay calm under pressure. Make sure that you communicate that on your resume!
Another aspect to consider representing on your resume is any learning that you undertook during the time that you were at home. Did you take any courses or do any self-directed learning? Were you involved in the community or do any volunteer work such as being part of the PAC?
Here are some ways to talk about being a parent on your resume.
This parent has professional experience in business from another country. After coming to Canada, her daughter was diagnosed with autism and she decided to stay home to support her child. She is now ready to look for work and decided her best option was finding work helping other children with autism as a behavior interventionist. We created this resume to show that she has strong skills and experience in this field.
This parent has been off work for 10 years while raising her children. During this time, she was heavily involved in her children's school through the PAC committee. We decided to include some of her accomplishments from that experience.
If you have been on maternity leave, you do not need to mention your leave on your resume. You are still considered employed during that time.
However, it is important to note that some people may not feel comfortable with mentioning being a parent on their resume. Each resume requires a different strategy depending on the person, industry, and job that they are applying for.
If you need help strategizing on how to represent your experience on your resume, consider working with Career Story. Each resume that we build is unique to our clients. We focus on building strong content and then presenting it in a visually-appealing way to ensure that it gets noticed by hiring managers. Contact us at 604-614-3155 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org