Returning to the workforce after being a stay-at-home parent? Don't list these things on your CV
"There is huge value in the work that [stay-at-home moms] do but please, please don't put this kind of waffle on your CV." Meow! See what one recruiter lists as big no-nos for explaining work gaps due to parenting.
"Spent 7 years looking after my two children who needed and deserved my attention." Just. Don't. (iStock)
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Heading back to the workforce after a long period away can be daunting, especially when you opted to take time out to raise your children. 

Choosing to spend the precious foundational years with the little ones is not only commendable, it's also enviable since most parents would want to spend as much time raising their children without the pressure to provide financially. 

But when the time comes to get back on the horse, whatever you do, don't add family responsibilities to your CV. 

This was the advice of one rather annoyed recruiter who took to the UK forum Mumsnet to share her frustration with a little trend she's picked up on from the CVs of stay-at-home moms

The poster, windygallows, holds no punches in her opinion of what not to add to a job application, calling out family-related duties as "nonsense" and "waffle" and completely inappropriate on a CV. 


Also see: You’re not “just a mom”: Motherhood is like working 2.5 jobs – fact

How did you feel prior to getting back to work after being a stay-at-home parent? Tell usand we could publish your letter. Do let us know if you'd like to stay anonymous.



Mrs Jones

"One, we'll call her Mrs Jones, wrote that for 10 years she was employed by the 'Jones family' and that her work involved 'organizing international travel for her family'. Because organizing a holiday is similar to the tasks led by senior executives," she wrote. 

Another big no-no? Listing everyday tasks, especially since these things are what most working moms need to do anyway on top of everything else. 

"Another wrote a list of every task she did at home from getting groceries to cleaning the house which, while impressive as an exhaustive list, doesn't really mean much when applying to an office-based role. Especially as it's basically a list of everything most employees have to fit in outside of work." 

Further, there is no telling whether or not a recruiter could take offence when you glorify your role as a full-time parent, given that the chances are highly likely that a recruiter may also be a parent and may not have had the choice to stay home with the kids. 

"More galling are the claims that women make about the critical role they played - with my favourite being the one who, 'Spent 7 years looking after my two children who needed and deserved my attention.'" 

"There is huge value in the work that SAHM [stay-at-home moms] do but please, please don't put this kind of waffle on your CV. You never know if your interview panel will consist of a FT [full-time] working, single mom like me who finds it pretty insulting that working means her children apparently lost out on 'the attention they needed and deserved.' Urgh." 


Also see: A day in the life of a stay-at-home dad


Not always the case 

It's safe to say that Mrs Jones had no intention of insulting the person on the receiving end of her CV – it's hard to know what will offend whom in any context. 

So, we asked local recruiters Eduplace Recruitment Agency to weigh in on their thoughts on whether mommy duties are appropriate on a CV. 

Corresponding with Eduplace CEO, Gregory Howard, via email, it became clear that in certain industries, like education, being a mom is a plus.  

"When we view resumes and [a] person states they have been a stay-at-home mom, we look at that favourably," Gregory told Parent24. 

"A mother’s role consists of many facets and dynamics. Depending on the role or vacancy, we will match their skill set."

Chat back:

How did you feel prior to getting back to work after being a stay-at-home parent? Tell us and we could publish your letter. Do let us know if you'd like to stay anonymous.

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