Women still earn only 82 cents for every dollar earned by a man in the equivalent job, with the same background and skills, as reported by the American Association of University Women in The Simple Truth about the Gender Pay Gap. One of the reasons the report cited for the gap was motherhood. Fatherhood does not affect salary as much as motherhood.
However, with more fathers becoming primary caregivers for children and with women demanding more equality, that situation is slowly changing. In the meantime, both men and women struggle with the following questions:
How does your or your partner’s or spouse’s pregnancy affect your job search? A woman cannot be turned down for a job because she is pregnant, and her employer is legally bound to provide reasonable accommodations. Federal law provides legal rights for pregnant individuals in companies that have 15 or more employees, and state law may be more stringent. Your partner’s or spouse’s pregnancy is irrelevant and should not even come up during your job search and interviews.
How do pregnancy and parenthood affect your resume? It should not affect your resume at all. When you apply for a job, you have no obligation to reveal that you are pregnant, intend to become pregnant, or are the parent of children.
How does taking time off to raise a family affect your resume? It is best to be upfront about taking time off to raise a family rather than leaving a work gap. Address the issue briefly in your resume; if more explanation is needed, you can give it during the interview. You will also reassure a future employee if you managed to keep up your skills while raising your family, through freelance or volunteer work or by taking classes or earning certification.
What if your only skills are as a parent or caregiver? Depending on the position you want, you may have to take additional time to train, develop skills, and earn a degree or certification in your chosen field. You can emphasize the skills required as a parent or caregiver, but realistically those skills usually have minimal value in the job market minus other credentials. Even professional nannies and caregivers need some training; for example, knowing how to perform CPR.
If you are concerned about the way family responsibilities have affected your resume, please contact Robin’s Resumes® for guidance and for a resume that makes the most of what you have to offer.