You’re a stay-at-home mom.
You’re great at time management, organization, and able to juggle five jobs at once.
Safe to say you’d make a great employee!
But HOW do you prove your abilities to your future employer?
What do you put on a stay-at-home mom resume, anyway?
Well, that’s exactly what we’re about to answer.
We understand that applying to jobs after years of staying at home can be a daunting experience. But please don’t worry - our guide will get you back on your feet in no time!
- An example of a finished stay-at-home parent resume that works
- How to write a stay-at-home mom resume that’ll fill up your interview diary
- How to make your stay-at-home mom resume stand out [with top tips & tricks]
Before we dive into why the company should hire you, here’s a stay-at-home mom resume example, created with our very own resume builder:
Want one of these? Then follow the steps below:
How to Format a Stay-at-Home Mom Resume
Whether you’re getting your kids ready for school or running them a bath, you know the importance of preparation.
Similarly, you need to prepare your resume format before you can start writing!
But what does this actually mean?
Well, your resume needs to be structured correctly.
The most common resume format is “reverse-chronological”, and it is for good reason. This format puts your most recent achievements up-top, which keeps your resume clean and easy to follow.
You may also wish to explore the two following formats:
- Functional Resume – This type of resume focuses on skills, which makes it ideal for stay-at-home moms who have gaps in their employment history or never worked in that specific industry.
- Combination Resume – Getting back into the same job after a short break? Combining both “Functional” and “Reverse-Chronological”, individuals with both the required skills and experience may want to use this format.
After picking the correct format for your situation, you need to sort the resume layout.
For a stay-at-home mom resume that looks the part, we recommend:
- Margins - One-inch margins on all sides
- Font - Use a professional resume font that stands out, but not too much
- Font Size - Stick to 11-12pt font size for normal text and 14-16pt for headers
- Line Spacing - Use 1.0 or 1.15 line spacing
- Resume Length - Maintain a 1-page limit. For guidance, view these one-page resume templates
Use a Stay-at-Home Mom Resume Template
Ever written a document?
There’s a good chance you used Word, or similar processing software.
Now, these programs are great for creating simple documents, but are they good enough for your resume?
Not if you want a professional-looking resume!
Why do we say this?
Well, Word isn’t the best for holding structure.
You see, it can take hours to create the perfect structure, only for you to make one small change, and BOOM…your resume falls apart.
You’re a busy parent - Free up your time by using a stay-at-home mom resume template.
What to Include in a Stay-at-Home Mom Resume
The main sections in a stay-at-home mom resume are:
- Contact Information
- Work Experience
- Employment Gap
To really impress the recruiter, you can also add these optional sections:
- Awards & Certification
- Interests & Hobbies
That’s the sections sorted, but what should you write for each of them?
Let’s find out!
For a full rundown on each section, view our guide on What to Put on a Resume.
How to Correctly Display your Contact Information
Now, this isn’t the time to unleash your creative flair.
You just need to keep this section factually-correct.
You could submit the best resume in the world, but if your phone number is wrong, well, you won’t be getting any interviews.
As you can see, accuracy is the name of the game in your contact section.
The contact information section must include:
- Full Name
- Title - Align this to the exact job title you’re applying for
- Phone Number - The one you are most-easily reached on
- Email Address - Keep your email professional (email@example.com)
- (Optional) Location - Applying for a job abroad? Mention your location.
- Emily Brown, Receptionist. 101-358-6095. firstname.lastname@example.org
- Emily Brown, Supermom Receptionist. 101-358-6095. email@example.com
How to Write a Stay-at-Home Mom Resume Summary or Objective
The job market is getting more and more competitive.
In fact, most employers usually have a HUGE pool of applicants to choose from.
Taking this into account, we can’t be too surprised that recruiters are known to spend less than 6 seconds on each resume!
Although rather concerning, we can use this knowledge to our advantage.
You just need a way to hook the reader.
But HOW can you do this?
Use a resume summary or objective, which are both attention-grabbing paragraphs that sit at the top of your resume.
This paragraph will be the first thing the hiring manager lays their eyes on, so make it the best it can be!
Although similar, there are differences between a summary and an objective…
A resume summary is a 2-4 sentence paragraph that summarizes your most notable professional achievements.
- Fast-working and friendly receptionist with 18 years of experience working on the front desk of a local gymnasium, where I achieved a customer satisfaction score of 98%. Highly-skilled in data-entry, customer service, and negotiation. Seeking to leverage interpersonal skills and a commitment to great service to become the new receptionist at GYM XYZ.
A resume objective is a 2-4 sentence paragraph of what you want to achieve and why you’re perfect for the position.
- Enthusiastic and friendly gym-goer looking to work as the new receptionist at GYM XYZ. Passionate about keeping visitors happy and satisfied. Relevant experience includes serving customers during two years at CAFÉ XYZ. Skilled in POS, communication, and time management.
So, should stay-at-home moms use a summary or an objective?
Generally, because stay-at-home moms will have large employment gaps, a resume objective would be the best choice. With that said, if you’re entering back into an industry that you have plenty of experience in, a resume summary would be the best choice.
How to Make Your Work Experience Stand Out
The work experience section is the most important section on your resume.
As such, it’s a section that requires special care and attention.
The goal is to write a powerful work experience section that stands out and highlights your most notable achievements.
Doing so will instil confidence and reduce any perceived risk in hiring you.
Now, you may be concerned about your employment gap, but don’t be.
Anyway, it’s always better to explain your employment gaps, rather than attempt to conceal them.
Here’s how to correctly structure your work experience section:
- Position name
- Company Name
- Responsibilities & Achievements
06/2017 – 03/2020
- Based on surveying, I achieved a 99.4% visitor satisfaction score during my three years at Real Gym
- Welcome and advised 250+ customers a day
- Developed a new fitness class system that reduced complaints by 48%
Instead of simply talking about your daily tasks, you should show how valuable you were at your previous employment. You see, this will allow the recruiter to immediately see how you’ll directly benefit the company.
Instead of saying:
“Kept visitors happy”.
“Based on surveying, I achieved a 99.4% visitor satisfaction score during my three years at Real Gym”.
Apart from being much longer, how is the second statement different?
Well, it uses quantitative data to back-up your skills. It allows the recruiter to see why you’d make a great addition to the team.
On the other hand, the first statement is way too generic. The recruiter has most likely read those exact words 18 times today.
What if You Don’t Have Any Relevant Work Experience?
So, you’re going back to work after a long lay-off.
But that doesn’t necessarily mean you will be applying for the same job.
What if you don’t have experience?
Not to worry!
You see, just because you’ve never worked as a receptionist, doesn’t mean lack the relevant skills and experiences needed to be great at that job.
You would just need to mention the crossover skills from previous jobs, like being able to operate a cash machine, having great communication skills, and being detail-orientated.
How to Explain Gaps in Employment on a Stay-at-Home Mom Resume
Why is there a gap in your employment?
Your employer will want to know what you’ve been up to recently.
Even though you’ve talked about your previous jobs, it’s now time to address the elephant in the room.
The trick here is to focus on any skills learnt during your time as a stay-at-home mom, especially skills relevant to the job you’re applying for.
- Created a blog that documented my journey through parenthood – receives 10k+ views per month
- Volunteered at my local charity – served dinner to 100+ homeless every Tuesday night
Sure – an employment gap isn’t ideal, but you can use this section to highlight the skills and experiences developed during this gap. Essentially, you can spin a negative into a positive!
Now, we both know that being a stay-at-home mom IS a full-time job, but resist listing your parent-related duties, unless the job involves working with small children or similar.
Use Action Words to Make Your SAHM Resume POP!
Those poor hiring managers.
Having to read the same generic words in every resume they read.
Although bad for them, this is great for you!
You see, it allows you to create a “return-to-workforce” resume that stands out by using some power words:
How to Correctly List your Education
Next, let’s discuss what to put in your education section.
Regardless of the position that you’re applying for, this section follows a simple formula:
- Qualification Type
- Institution Name
- Years Studied
- GPA, Honours, Courses, and anything else you might want to add
When put together, your education section should resemble the following example:
Majoring in Culinary Arts
Ohio State University
2008 - 2012
- Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Events (MICE), Financial and Revenue Management, Research Project, Entrepreneurship and Innovation in the Experience Economy, Exploring Professional Practice in Hospitality.
Still have a few questions? Here are the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions we get from stay-at-home moms:
- What if I haven’t come to the end of my studies yet?
Not to worry. Just include the courses and modules studies to date
- Should I include my high school education?
If it’s your highest form of education, then yes
- What is more important, my education or experience?
Experience always wins this race, although education is still important
For in-depth answers, check out our guide on how to list education on a resume.
Top Skills for a Stay-at-Home Mom Resume
As a mom, you have invaluable skills that your little-one depends on.
But you can’t exactly write “able to put three kids to bed every night” on your resume.
So, what should you do instead?
Well, what did you write in your experience section?
Here’s a trick: analyze both your work experience and the job description.
If you see any skills that crossover, add them to your resume.
Do this correctly, and you’ll be showing the exact skills the recruiter is looking for!
And if you need more inspiration, here are some of the most common soft skills:
- Personable and friendly
- Endurance (long hours)
- Conflict resolution
- Time management
- Team player
- Be honest here. Interviewers will usually ask applicants to explain more about the skills listed.
Confused about what skills to put on your stay-at-home mom resume? Check out our comprehensive list of 150+ must-have skills this year.
What Else Can You Include?
There we have it.
All essential sections have been added to your resume.
But don’t call it a day just yet!
Adding just one or two of the following sections could be deciding factor in whether you’re hired for the job or not!
Awards & Certifications
Have you ever been employee of the month?
Have you completed any courses that are relevant to the job?
If you have any awards or certifications, be sure to include it in your resume!
Awards & Certificates
- “Employee of the Year 2018” - Real Gym
- “Learning How to Learn” - 2019 Coursera Certificate
Applying to a Spanish restaurant?
Then being able to speak some Spanish is sure to increase your chances.
Whether it’s a specific requirement or not, being able to speak multiple languages is impressive – and who can argue with that!?
Rank the languages by proficiency:
Interests & Hobbies
Now, you’re likely wondering, “why would the hiring manager need to know about my keen interest in badminton?”
Well, because it allows them to learn more about whom you actually are.
Companies want new members of staff that fit in well with the current team.
The easiest way to do this is to discuss your hobbies, especially those hobbies which involve social interaction.
Here’s which hobbies & interests you may want to mention.
Include a Cover Letter with Your Resume
How to really “wipe the floor” with your competition?
Attach a convincing cover letter with your resume!
You see, your resume is great for delivering the core message, but nothing speaks to the recruiter like a well-written cover letter.
But what do we mean by this?
Well, a cover letter allows you to make a personal connection, which ensures you’ll be remembered by the hiring manager.
As well as offering the chance to fill in all the blanks, a cover letter also shows that you want to work for this exact company.
Here’s how to create a structure that works:
And here’s the winning formula:
Personal Contact Information
Use your full name, profession, phone number, email, and address
Hiring Manager’s Contact Information
Use their full name, position, location, email
Make sure your opening paragraph commands attention. Briefly mention:
- The exact job position you’re applying for
- Your experience summary and best achievement to date
Once you’ve grabbed the reader’s attention, you can delve further into the following specifics:
- Why you chose this specific company
- What you know about the company’s vision and culture
- How your skills will be beneficial to the company
- Whether you’ve worked in similar positions before
Finish with a closing paragraph that:
- Concludes the key points of your cover letter
- Thanks the manager for reading and for the job opportunity
- Ends with a call to action. For example, “At your earliest convenience, I’d love to discuss more about how I can help your company with X” will work.
While remaining personal, the letter should end in a professional manner. Use something like, “Kind regards” or “Sincerely.”
For extra cover letter advice, view our step-by-step guide on how to write a cover letter.
Good luck with your new job:
Because if you followed the steps in this guide, you should now have a job-winning resume!
Make sure to:
- Select one of the recommended formats for your specific situation and employment history, and then follow the recommended layout
- Catch the reader’s attention with a short, snappy summary or objective
- In the work experience section, make sure to highlight your most relevant and best achievements, rather than just your daily duties. Oh, and don’t be put off by your employment gap
- For a highly-specific application that starts a conversation, include a convincing cover letter