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5 quick resume tips for graduates with little (or no) experience

Fresh graduates usually find it difficult to land their first job. One major reason why this is the case is because they do not know what to write in the resume section regarding professional work experience because in as far as is always the case, many only have internship to their name.

It gets even more stressing at the thought of facing a panel alongside people who have been working in the past many years. Another big hurdle new job market entrants face is the prospect of fair and competitive ground, which is hugely skewed to favour job market veterans.

Resumes form the bulk of everything to do with job application and it’s a gemstone most prospective employers want to catching a glimpse of before making a decision whether one is worthy of employment or not. It therefore goes without saying that anyone who wants to standout during a job interview must get down to the basics of what defines a professional resume and apply every such detail to paper.  Literally, once you are out of school, everything to do with composing a job application letter go beyond classroom writing skills. Attributes like confidence during an interview add flavour to the whole hiring situation.

Tackling the Job experience Dilemma

You are not going to be the first person to face up to a biting reality of a tumultuous job search experience out there especially as a fresh graduate. It is what hardens the spirit of every new job seeker before opportunities can start coming one’s way. Stories of people who have just earned their first degrees with no work experience getting plum jobs are not hearsay and so, the question of how are you going to be among the successful ones is not farfetched.

The usual first steps

Routinely, when one sees a job vacancy advert, he or she, first of all, takes a look at the qualifications required with years of experience being the focal point. And because fresh graduates feel left out by such requirements, letting maiden opportunities slip away from their hands happens most of the times. It’s no different if one decides to go into independent working without outstanding professional achievements, because freelance clients equally prefer those who have the experience advantage.  For instance, while online writing services have increasingly become goldmines for newbies in the job market, they always emphasize on hiring those who can deliver based on their experience levels.  This should not, however, be misconstrued to mean that those who opt for freelance jobs face even more difficult dilemmas when it comes to writing their resumes.  What is necessary is showing through provisional writing tests or writing portfolio that you can put words to paper creatively. This is where those masterpiece essays you wrote back at school go a long way in earning one a job at the click of a button. 

The 5 tips for no or little work experience graduate

Resumes are usually crafted in a certain format.  This is however not rigid depending on what is required of one to fill up a vacancy as well as writing styles recommended in different parts of the world.

Take a look at the following professional resume writing tips and secure a dream job even with no work experience:

Work on the layout

Applications that are disorderly end up in the bin most of the times. This is because it becomes a bumpy ride trying to even figure out where educational background details are.  Employers do scan CVs through quick previews and an applicant who has had all the information clearly laid out using appropriate fonts, keywords, consistent headers and properly formatted pages are sure to get shortlisted.

Make clear selling propositions

This is an opportunity to state reasons why you think you are a good fit. While those with no experience sometimes think it is a trap to state internship experience, the truth is, the nitty-gritty tasks you undertook and challenges that came with them can make a huge difference between you and another person.

Include those social skills

Here, it largely depends on what job you are applying for such as sales, marketing, and PR. However, it is worthwhile all the same to provide a link to your social media profile. This goes a long way in providing proof for team work. 

Don’t be robotic

The internet has hugely made a difference between the Y-generation and those who were born in the years between 1980 and 1995. If you cannot horn the skill of using buzzwords correctly, at least don’t try. It takes good self-expression in way of writing to be understood and most likely, hired.

Volunteer activities

Co-curricular and volunteer activities if relevant to a job applied for are transferable in a more useful way. And so, whether paid or not, the bottom line is they sometimes help horn certain skills. This means you should only state them if relevant to a position being applied to.

In summary, no-work experience shouldn’t be a reason to fret at the thought of applying for a competitive vacancy. Simple, creative and witty resume writing skills can make it happen. 


Catrin Cooper is a freelance writer from San Francisco. She loves writing about marketing, self-development and real estate. In a free time, Catrin enjoys traveling and yoga.