Returning to Work: Resume Writing Tips

I recently spoke to some C-Suite types and they all said the same thing: They love having mums back in the workplace. This was from three seperate people and they were passionate and genuine with their sentiment. I was pleased and intrigued. I wanted to know more. “Mum’s are hardworking,” they all said. They come in motivated to get shit done and get it done well; they offer great balance to an office.


I’ve been back at work over a year now and I can honestly say I doubted myself at first. I doubted how I’d handle working and being a mum and I assumed because I was often so tired that it would impact my work. But I was wrong. I should never have questioned my work ethic or capabilities. One thing I’ve learned is that whomever you were before, is exactly who you’ll be again, only perhaps a little more efficient! So that’s the good news. The next step is nailing that resume and getting your confidence up for the interview process.

Here’s five little tips to help you nail it:

Cover letter:

Don’t put anything about being a mum returning to work in your cover letter. Your cover letter just needs to outline your suitability to the job and your interest in working with the company. Your resume profile is where you can detail your time as a full-time mum.

Proof read:

Resumes and cover letters are your ‘first impression’.  Make sure they are  proof read and spell checked. Nothing worse than letting yourself down on a technicality.

Be honest:

It’s okay that you’ve taken time out to be a mum. Don’t try to skirt around it. Focus on your strengths. Ask friends and peers who are in a similar line of work, what is it that’s important in their roles. You’ll find the core values and skills required are probably not that different from where you left off. If they’ve changed, figure out what courses you can take to up-skill yourself, or think about temping to ease back into things and show them what you’ve got!

Stand out:

This applies to any job application whether your a mother or not. Something as simple as decent weight paper stock or even a well-designed infographic CV (if you’re in a creative industry) is a great way to make an impact right from the word go. Find a way to stand out from the slush pile. You want to make sure your personality comes through, but don’t make it too ‘busy’ or ‘fancy’ or it will be off-putting instead of memorable!

Be prompt:

One thing we all worry about when returning to work is our ability to time-manage. Trick is to start right from the word go, which means during the application process. Make sure you check emails and messages regularly. You don’t want the busy schedule of being a mum to make you miss that important call!

Good luck!

Sam S

Samantha is the editor at Thirty4Seven and mother to one cheeky boy, Thor. Outside of her day-job as Head of Marketing and full-time-job as a single mum, Sam loves to write and has published four fiction novels. Originally from London and currently residing in Sydney, her ideal way to relax is a stormy day in a quaint coffee shop with her MacBook Pro.

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[…] that suits your new life. If you don’t have a job to return to, check out Kristy Lee’s tips to resume writing for new […]

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"Welcome to Thirty-4-Seven. A place designed to provide you will tools to help balance corporate life and motherhood without sacrificing either. This is a space focused on your wellbeing, your happiness and your business success. Together, we're a powerful network of women, from the ones who have been there and done that to those just starting out on their journey. Women supporting women, mums supporting mums. Thirty-4-seven began as a blog called City Mum. That was me. Lost and floundering in a world it didn’t feel I belonged. Back then I could have really used a place like this. So here it is, and I’m so glad you’re here."

- Sam