Don’t worry about that COVID resume gap, career expert says. Here’s why.

In our week-long series, “Spring Into Summer,” Linkedin career expert Catherine Fisher shares some advice for people getting back to work as COVID-19 restrictions ease.

The long-held hiring stigma over career gaps that has discouraged numerous people from potentially applying to jobs may be a thing of the past, according to LinkedIn career expert Catherine Fisher.

“Many people, you know, had to stop working — either by choice or not by choice. And recruiters tell us that they kind of expect that many people were going to have a gap,” she said.

A recent LinkedIn report found that hiring increased 3.5% from March until April, up more than 69% from April 2020.

Speaking on “CBS This Morning” Thursday, Fisher shared some advice for job-seekers trying to get back into work life after the height of the pandemic. 

“What they’re looking for is, what did you do during that gap? Did you learn new skills, did you get new certificates?” Fisher said. “It’s how you take that time to be creative and learn new skills, because we know that skills is really what matters these days.”

The reason, she said, is that the selection of open jobs looks different now than it did in early 2020.

“What happened during the pandemic is that there were some industries obviously that were incredibly hard hit, and there were some industries who literally couldn’t find enough employees. It’s because they were looking the wrong way. They were looking at education, the network, et cetera. Then they realized skills-based hiring is how you find the best people, because it’s really the skills that you need to get the job done,” Fisher said. 

Some of those industries making a return include entertainment, recreation, travel, software and information technologies.

“As people get back out, they want to be entertained, they want to travel and then want to go on vacation — this is where we’re really seeing some great signs of recovery,” Fisher said.

Fisher noted a lot of openings can be found in cities like Tampa Bay, Jacksonville, Raleigh-Durham, St. Louis, New York and Boston.

For people looking to apply for jobs that do not line up with their experience, Fisher encouraged them to take an inventory of their skills.

“Compare it to the role that you’re interested in, and you’ll see how many transferrable skills there are,” she said, adding that there was a wealth of online courses available to fill certain skill gaps.

“This is great news because it really brings more equity to the workplace.”

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