Being a stay-at-home parent can be a full time job in and of itself. Over 2 million women have left the American workforce due to the ongoing pandemic, and there have been nationwide calls for the government to finally address the invisible labor of mothers everywhere. Now, LinkedIn is stepping up and doing its part to help.
Last week, the platform announced it would add stay-at-home mom, stay-at-home dad and stay-at-home parent job titles, among others, for its English-language users. Other options the platform will provide include “caretaker,” “homemaker,” “mom” and “dad.” The change is part of the company’s global skills initiative with Microsoft, launched in June 2020, which aims to help people build digital skills for in-demand jobs and get hired. The new job title offerings aim to help people better explain gaps in their resume when it comes to paid employment.
The platform will be rolling out many new features as part of the initiative, LinkedIn spokesperson Suzi Owens told Today Parents, adding that they had already made the “company” field (found under “experience”) option for a small group of users. Owens also told the outlet that LinkedIn will also be adding an “employment gaps” field, in which users can choose “sabbatical,” “personal leave,” “parental leave” and other options to “clearly and transparently show a life event in your career.”
These changes were first reported by Fortune Magazine. The magazine had asked LinkedIn to comment following a Medium article, published early in March, asking LinkedIn to provide more job title options to help normalize gaps in resumes.
“It’s time for employers to accept that careers are often non-linear and to provide improved policies for remote work, flex time, and paid family leave. And it’s time for job seekers to not feel like they must skirt around employment gaps, lest be frozen out. At the moment, it’s impossible to call out pandemic leave on LinkedIn in a straightforward manner,” the Medium article stated. “It’s hard enough to frame up one’s experience on a professional profile, even more so when the platform doesn’t recognize an aspect of that experience.”