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Samantha Greenfield

How to handle short-term jobs and layoffs on your resume

Most people have probably held a short term job or two in their past. Should you put those transitionary positions on your resume?

Some people have been laid off once or even twice within a relatively short period of time. While this was once viewed as taboo, employers have become more understanding when it comes to this type of circumstance.

In a functional or hybrid resume, consider listing your work experience and explaining the reason for leaving the job. If you have worked for companies that have closed or downsized, explaining this situation can help you.

In order to fill the need for income, have you covered for someone on medical leave, held a freelance or contract position? If so, it is a good idea to note this information in the job description. It explains to the hiring manager why you didn't stay where you were. You should keep the explanation on the resume brief, only a few words. Provide just enough for the hiring manager to understand the cause. In the cover letter, you can explain the circumstances in greater detail: Your previous employers had to make some hard decisions due to the economy - one of which resulted in you losing your job or you took a .temporary position for extra income.

A few examples of how to format a short-term job:

SCHEDULING COORDINATOR (Feb-June Maternity Coverage) 2009
Smith Community College/Anytown, VA

Coordination of daily and monthly facility reservations and state vehicle reservations for entire staff at Community College.
• State Vehicles - scheduled vehicle reservations for staff and faculty. Maintained weekly and monthly mileage and service spreadsheets.
• Administrative Duties- Updated and emailed weekly event schedule, meeting minutes, ordered tags and signage, maintained VP of Facilities and Administration meeting calendar


PRODUCTION ASSISTANT 2009 Tri-State Printing Press - Anytown, Va.

• Assited with the production of weekly and monthly print productions
• Directly fed materials into a binding machinery
• Trained new hires in proper company policies and procedures
• Prepared products for shipping
• Laid off due to corporate downsize

Some jobs you may have held for such a short period of time you may not think it necessary to add them to your resume. If the job you vacated does not relate to the position you are applying for, it may not be crucial to add it to your resume. You may run a risk of being passed over if you look like a job hopper, but on the other hand, honesty is the best policy. Ultimately, it is up to you to decide on how to best market yourself on your resume.

Winchester Workforce Connection Schedule for May 14-18 2012:

  • May 15 @ 9 a.m. - Finding the Hidden Job Market & Marketing Yourself in a Highly Competitive Job Market

  • May 16 @ 11 a.m. : Basic Resume Writing

Please call ahead to pre-register. 540-722-3415



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