Composing a CV can be a daunting prospect for even the most experienced of job hunters, but if you have little or no work history it can fill you with even more dread.
However don’t let the lack of work experience put you off applying for a role; after all you can make the most of other factors; such as your skills, potential and your drive and passion.
To increase your chances of landing a role, take a look at our pointers below on how to construct a CV without having professional experience.
Unpaid Experience Counts
Just because you haven’t got paid for a particular role, doesn’t mean the experience gained isn’t valuable to a potential employer. By adding any voluntary or work placements to your CV will only help to demonstrate your eagerness to gain new skills and illustrate your willingness to go the extra mile to achieve your career goals.
Utilise Your Qualifications
Think about the skills which you have gained by undertaking a qualification. For instance you might have conducted research, wrote lengthy documents or being required to submit a project to a tight deadline. The following skills can be transferable to the workplace and will make you a much more attractive candidate to a potential employer.
Add An Interests Section
Having a ‘Hobbies and Interests‘ section in your CV is optional for all job seekers, however if you have no or very little work experience, this can be a great way to highlight your personal traits. Only list interests that will be suitable for the role which you are applying for and be willing to expand on them during an interview. But remember to stay clear of anything that is far too generic, as this won’t make you stand out from the crowd!
Showcase Your Skills
Before you apply for a position, it’s important to identify the key skills which you are able to bring to a role. Don’t just create a list of the skills which you possess, as you also need to back them up with firm examples. Don’t forget to also highlight any achievements outside of the workplace as this is a great way of further showcasing your skills.
An employer is not only looking for what you have done, but what you can do in the future. A job application’s purpose is to demonstrate your previous experience and to convince an employer why you are suitable for the job. Remember you can talk about challenges you have overcome in both your professional and personal life and what lessons you have learnt to help you progress with your career.
Experiment With Layout
Unlike a traditional CV, if you have little work experience you can be more flexible with the layout of your CV. Instead of dedicating the majority of the space to work history, it maybe more suitable to dedicate it to your achievements for example. Start with the most important information first such as key projects you have worked on or any voluntary experience. But don’t be tempted to draw out any experience into long paragraphs, as this maybe off-putting for a recruiter.