Been Self-Employed? 5 Tips If You're Looking For A Job Now

Posted on: 15 January 2020

Being self-employed is a great opportunity for people of all sorts, from parents who want to stay at home more to entrepreneurs looking for a new adventure. But what happens if you need to seek a regular job after a period of self-employment? This can present unique challenges to job hunters. To help you snag the best new job under these circumstances, follow these key tips.

1. List Your Company. Many entrepreneurs have a bona fide business, such as a limited liability company or S corporation. If this is the case for you, list this on your resume and put your duties and a title (like manager or something similar) as well as relevant training or certifications you received to run your business. These elements serve to downplay the fact that you worked for yourself. 

2. Focus on Experience. Rather than focus on the fact that you worked independently, focus on what you accomplished and learned during this time. List various tasks relevant to the positions you are now looking for. Even if the two fields were different, look for skills or experience that will cross over between them, such as sales work or office management.

3. Have References. Many employers are willing to consider self-employment experience if they can verify it. Talk to former clients or business partners about serving as professional references. Anyone who was familiar with what you did during this period could serve as a reference for your skills or work ethic, including vendors you worked with regularly or even employees.

4. Use a Professional. Don't try to go it alone if you have anything unusual on your resume. Your best bet right now is to seek out a job searching service and explain your situation to them. You will not be the only self-employed person they have worked with, and they will know how best to approach things. They will also have contacts you don't have.

5. Address the End. Many employers will want to know why you're looking for a job rather than continuing a business. The ideal answer would have to do with your need for new challenges or more advancement. If the business ended in failure, don't emphasize this — but don't shy away from it either. Explain what you learned from the experience and how those lessons can help your new employer. 

Certainly, looking for work when you have a gap in your employee history is a unique challenge. But by presenting the subject in the right way and emphasizing the positive aspects, you can overcome this challenge and find your next great job. 

To learn more, contact a job search company.