Children in the curriculum: yes or no?

Is indicating children in the curriculum good practice or should it be completely avoided? What does the Italian law say on the matter? And what should we do to avoid providing unnecessary information or, on the contrary, providing information that is too general? The question is topical and involves several things. In this guide we try to give you the tools to evaluate if and when it is appropriate to insert the presence of children on the CV and how to behave.

Children on the CV and the privacy problem

Information about one’s family, as well as marital status or even home address, are considered sensitive and therefore must be treated with extreme sensitivity. This is data that must be provided with extreme caution to strangers and that is why we must remember that when we send our resume, we are spreading information about us that can end up in the wrong hands. For this reason, the choice of whether to indicate children in the curriculum must be carefully considered.

Work discrimination due to family situation

Please note that Italian law does not require that personal data be included in the CV, which is considered confidential and therefore protected by the privacy law. This means that, in theory, a company cannot discriminate against a candidate who is looking for a job by evaluating their personal life, but practically no one can prevent this.

However, it may happen that a candidate is discriminated against, regardless of his experience and professionalism, precisely because he has specified certain information on his CV: even if Legislative Decree 276/2003 prohibits discrimination in the selection phase, remember that this can happen and the candidate will never be aware of it.

Even if the law prohibits it, a candidate can be discriminated against because of his family situation.

There is no obligation to indicate whether we have children or not on the curriculum

We reiterate that there is no law and no unwritten obligation to indicate the presence or absence of offspring on our curriculum. This is because in the selection phase the personal life of a candidate is not considered and for this reason the same candidate must treat it as confidential.

It is therefore good to ask yourself, when you are writing your CV and you decide whether to let the recruiter know if you have children: would I give this information in person to a stranger? For what reason? And what are the reasons why my offspring should be included on my CV?

Once you have found the answer, the reasons for including or not including your children on the resume are easier to understand.

Indicate children in the curriculum: the pros

When you apply for a job position the aim is to make a good impression on a professional level.

But it is no coincidence that for some employers knowing pieces of the candidate’s personal life is almost fundamental: the aim is to establish a more direct link with the candidate and, at the same time, understand how much dedication to comparisons of the company can have if hired.

Transparency can be a weapon to your advantage: if you are applying for a position that could potentially require you to work outside normal working hours for extraordinary needs, make it clear that you have children with whom returning can be the starting point in case of extra requests.

Indicate children on your resume: the cons

In light of the above, transparency can be a weapon to your advantage but, of course, also a weapon to your disadvantage.

In fact, an employer may be looking for a flexible candidate, who is available to work even after hours and who has no problems: even if you are the right candidate and would not have problems working overtime despite having a family, your potential employer may decide to discard you to avoid getting caught in case of need.

Furthermore, it could be argued:

  • a recruiter does not need to have information about your private life but must be made aware of all your experience and professionalism, evaluating yourself only by virtue of these two things.

When is it advisable to indicate the presence of children in the CV?

There are cases in which inserting children in the CV can be a good idea regardless of the pros and cons associated with this choice. Let’s take a couple of examples:

Example 1

Are you a kindergarten teacher? Openly state that you have children and that you know how to manage the needs of the little ones, making sure to emphasize the link between your professional background and your personal experience.

Example 2

You are applying for a position abroad or in another location. In case the selection is successful, you have to move with your whole family. In this case, your CV must state that you are available for the transfer and that you will have to move your whole family: this is information that you cannot ignore because an employer may prefer another type of candidate or not foresee relocation for all family members.

So there are situations in which giving more personal information can facilitate a candidate over the others, but these are situations to be evaluated from time to time (and therefore also the CV must be customized based on the announcement from time to time).

Children on the CV: how does it work abroad?

Unlike Italy, where to insert certain data or not is a subjective choice linked to the position for which you are applying, abroad, inserting the presence of children on the CV is considered irrelevant for the selection.

In conclusion

  • Children and family are part of that personal sphere that it is not necessary to mention on a CV;
  • They exist of the advantages in mentioning the presence of children on the CV but there are also disadvantages;
  • Sometimes and for certain positions it is good to specify your family situation;
  • If you are applying for a position that requires transfer elsewhere, this information is essential.

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