Boosting Your Resume Post-SAHM

Boosting Your Resume Post-SAHM

So you've enjoyed the wonderful benefits of staying home and raising your children, complete with snuggles and smiles. What now? The kids may be off to school or completely out of the house, so what will you do to fill your days? Many women immediately jump to returning to work, but it might be surprising that your resume is lacking some critical "work experience" (we think staying home with the kids is work!). In any case, returning to work may take a little resume-boosting. Let's take a look at some ways to make your resume more appealing to prospective employers.

List SAHM Skills

We all know that policing fights and balancing play date schedules is work, so play up those skills you've used during your stay-at-home career. List your years as a stay-at-home mom, but try to use some executive language to highlight the skill sets you've learned. For example, breaking up fights can be listed as "managing and dispelling disagreements." Balancing your family's mountains of appointments, play dates and sports schedules could be listed as "managing a multi-faceted schedule."

The important thing to ensure on this portion of your resume is that you never lie. Each skill that you develop can be listed and enhanced, but being caught in a lie is a surefire way to kill your chances at landing a job. So be honest; you'll land the interview and be able to explain your how your experiences as a SAHM can help the company.

Volunteer or Start Small

Another way to boost your resume is to re-enter the workforce in smaller ways. Volunteering at your children's school functions or landing a part-time job in the industry where you want to work can help you list some current employment and more skill sets that will be beneficial on your resume. Additionally, returning to the workforce in small ways can help you make connections and score the very important current references that may be needed in your job search.

Break the Rules

Many resume rules state that you should not list jobs from more than ten years ago, but if your resume is a little sparse, it could be a good idea to list your experience in your industry of choice. Showing your previous experience underlines your interest in returning to your earlier career path. However, don't focus too much on this experience; your potential employer will often simply glance at the experience to take in the number of years you were employed in the industry.

Return to School

Another way to boost your resume is to take continuing education courses in your field. Listing even a few courses can help show that you are very serious about returning to the career path. It also shows that you value education and are willing to do whatever it takes to begin afresh.

Boosting your resume after raising children for years can be a lot of hard work, and it may take a while to land your dream job once again. You might even need to start at a lower level than from which you exited your career path. However, listing your SAHM skills, volunteering, breaking some rules and educating yourself can all make you appear more valuable to a potential employer.

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AverageJoe's picture

AverageJoe wrote:

Wed, 02/29/2012 - 17:41 Comment #: 1

When I used to hire people who'd been SAHM's, I always appreciated those who broke the 10 year rule. Although times may have changed, I was VERY interested in talking about how they interacted in an office setting and what they handled.

I've forwarded this to my sister, who is in this very position right now. Timely piece. Thanks!

Christa Palm's picture

Christa Palm wrote:

Thu, 03/01/2012 - 23:04 Comment #: 2

Joe, good to know from an "insider" how HR looks at breaking this rule. Good luck to your sister!