Interviews: How to explain the nature of your job loss

The way you handle explaining the reason you left past employment while interviewing can hold a great deal of weight. In my recruiting practice, I often help candidates prepare for interviews.

Recently, I had a conversation with a good friend who unfortunately just lost her beloved job due to Covid-19; she worked in the entertainment sector. This industry took a big & early hit in the initial wave of downsizings in Canada due to the pandemic. We were discussing some resume updates and I caught that she referred to herself as being “Terminated”. This caught my attention. She was actually restructured. This got me thinking… I talk to job seekers all the time and it seemed that there is some broad based confusion about the wording associated with job loss. I decided to talk to a few HR professionals to get some advice. It all comes down to cause or fault. Is your reason for leaving a job due to your poor performance and/or negligence or was the reason due to a shortage of work or changes to the business outside of your specific performance. This is an important distinction in an interview. This guide is intended to provide clarity between the definitions and is not intended as legal definitions. This is a tool for your interview prep to put your best foot forward.