Traditionally, a resume gap was something to be ashamed of, something to hide, bury or disguise on your resume, but the rise of professional Returnships offer a way for job seekers with an extended absence from the workforce to not only “own their gap”, but make it work to their advantage.

HerStory of Returnships

In 2008, Goldman Sachs coined (and trademarked) the term Returnships, further proof that they knew they were on to something! The paid 10 week program was designed specifically to attract high potential talent looking to re-enter the workforce after an extended absence. Throughout the program, participants are mentored and receive valuable training that may result in a permanent job offer. Legend has it that it was actually the wife of a Goldman executive who came up with the idea, recognizing the hurdles women face when returning to work and because most great ideas for women are thought of by women, I’m going to run with this version.

An Easier On-Ramp Process

Like everything, there are people who argue for and against Returnships. At The MAP Agency we see Returnships as a win/win for both parties. Even if every participant is not extended a job offer, they have gained valuable experience and tools that will undoubtedly prepare them for re-entry with another company or lead to self-evaluation about their readiness to re-enter the workforce. Companies who implement Returnships have opened up a non-traditional avenue for sourcing experienced, qualified talent on top of adding a notch to their corporate social responsibility belt. Hey, if you’re not going to do anything to retain the women before they leave the workforce, at least provide an easier on-ramp process for them to re-enter.


In 2018, Goldman Sachs will still offer their Returnship program. Other companies who have “seen the light” and have implemented Re-entry programs are: Google, PayPal, JP Morgan Chase and Apple just to name a few. However, winning is not reserved strictly for large corporations. There are many startups placing their bets on career returners these days. The MAP Agency is excited to announce our 2018 Career Re-entry Program. Stay tuned for our exciting announcement on which smart Upstate companies will be #winning in 2018 and beyond! If you are Smart Woman returning to work or who wants to pivot in your career Become a Member. Smart Companies wanting to be connected to Smart Women, visit out employer page to find out how to become a partner. Happy New Year!!