First-time job seekers applying for a full-time position are often faced with a familiar challenge: they are interested in gaining experience, but have no work experience to prove they are qualified. Hiring managers believe that viewing an applicant’s work history is one of the best ways to predict future job performance. So how do you present a resume without significant work experience?
Make a Good First Impression
When you have no work experience, starting your resume with a clear objective is a great way to show that you are focused and understand the mindset of the employer. Another way to avoid presenting yourself with no work experience is to include a summary of qualifications listing your greatest strengths and skills that make you perfect for the position. This type of list highlights the experience you describe in the body of the resume and takes the spotlight off you having no work experience. A summary of qualifications can be created after completing the rest of the resume.
Prove Yourself—Even with No Work Experience
Even if you have no work experience, you may have experience volunteering or performing a hobby. Start with a section focusing on your education. As long as it relates to the job, school projects are acceptable when you have no work experience. Make a list of all talents and volunteer experiences that have developed transferable skills for the workplace. Every achievement or ability listed should relate to the job. Does the employer seek someone with strong customer service skills? Perhaps three years spent raising money for a school organization or sports team qualifies you for the position? Quantify each phrase to emphasize how your participation added value to the organization or event. Be sure to include any awards or promotions. When you have no work experience, any experience is fair game.
Show Your Skills
If you have no work experience, the bottom of your resume is a great place to list any skills you have developed that qualify you for the job. The hours you have spent in Photoshop or editing social media videos can be listed. Even if you have no work experience, these experiences still make you eligible for the position.
Remember: Be Professional
Having no work experience does not mean you are unqualified. Maintain consistent tense, style, and font when writing your resume. Take the time to proofread your writing for typos. This will present a level of professionalism. Use a resume building service like LiveCareer’s Resume Builder to develop a strong, professional resume that communicates enthusiasm and competence to employers. By promoting your skills and achievements, employers will be sure to see you as a perfect fit for their company, even with no work experience.