Strategies for Writing a Resume With No Job Experience for Students

This entry was posted in Articles, CV writing and tagged , , , on by Andres Herrera.

Many students believe that they can’t get a job because they don’t have suitable “work experience”. You shouldn’t let that dash your hopes. Experience isn’t the only factor considered by an employer. They are looking for so much more.  You can still write a mind-blowing resume even if you don’t have the exact skill set or level of experience required for a job. With these great tips, you’re going to be writing a resume that will end up with the employer dialing your number.

Choose a format

There are a variety of formats you can use. However, the most popular formats in use today are the functional, chronological, and hybrid (a mix of the first two) templates.

The functional template is used when the job seeker doesn’t want to put the focus on work experience but their skills and achievements. The chronological template shows work experience from the most recent to the least, that is, in reverse-chronological order.

Candidates with little experience tend to prefer the functional template. Although, employers lean more towards the chronological or hybrid templates. The most important thing is that you remain consistent with the format, irrespective of the one you choose.

Have an eye for detail

You need to have a keen eye for detail when writing your resume. It’s very easy to make mistakes with your spelling, grammar, and punctuation. Such mistakes will give your resume an amateurish look. Make sure to go over your work again and again so you don’t miss anything. As a job seeker with no experience, a missing detail is not in any way going to help your cause. Try to use a tone that keeps your reader engaged and still maintains the required formality.

Begin with a summary

Nothing beats giving a good first impression, and a good summary at the top end of the resume is a fantastic way to do that.

The summary should be a brief account about you profession-wise to make sure your prospective employer keeps reading. Now, as a student, you might be wondering what you can possibly hope to write here, but don’t worry about that, we’ve got you covered.

Education and Relevant Skills

As you have “zero” work experience, you should put more time into developing the education and skills section of your resume. What skills do you have that correlate with the job? What can you offer to the employer? Is there anything you have studied or done in school that may help with the job? As a high schooler, you can even talk about the coursework you have done that would be relevant to the job and what you learned.

Don’t leave out volunteer work and extracurricular activity

A lot of employers place high value on volunteer work. So, if there’s any volunteer experience you have that showcases your skills (including new ones you may have picked up), you should put it on your resume. You should include only extracurricular activities that have given you transferable skills for the job you’re applying for.

Internships

Most students grow cold feet when it’s time to fill the “work experience” field. However, internships, whether paid or unpaid, can also be considered as work experience. Apart from being a great source of experience, internships are a fantastic way to build connections that may help you find a job later. Before applying for a job, it is advisable to do an internship or two to better your chances.

Keywords

Employers usually scan through resumes using an applicant tracking system (ATS) or some other method. As unfair as this may seem, it’s just the way things are. To help with this, you should draw up a list of specific words to include in your resume.

You could easily google keywords that match the job your applying for, but it’s best to source these keywords from the ad for the job or similar jobs. Take care to avoid catchwords like “go-getter” and “team player”. If these are the only kinds of words you can find, you should fit them together with your achievements.

Send a cover letter

It’s a great idea to send in your resume accompanied by a cover letter. A good cover letter could be a defining factor in convincing prospective employers to bring you in for an interview. This is why they are especially vital to a student applying for a job without any experience.

Showcase your personality

Employers are not only out to find candidates with great work experience, but are also interested in finding people with personalities that match what the company is all about.

Showcasing your personality in your resume can put you in pole position to be selected for the job even if you don’t have exactly what the company is looking for.

Think outside the box and consider the personal traits that the employer thinks every employee at the company should have. Remember, at the end of the day, employers are looking to employ a person, not a piece of paper.

When writing a resume: No experience, no problem

After reading through these strategies, you should be able to craft a great resume that’s unique and compelling regardless of experience. As a student, it’s important to have a nice resume to keep your name high on employers’ lists.

Author: Tobias Foster
_
Tobias is a journalist and editor with more than 5 years of experience including, a stint at BrillAssignment. He has also worked as a contracted college paper and thesis writer. Philosophy, marketing, and business are his passion, and he has a wealth of knowledge in that field. He is a master of his craft.

What do Recruiters Look For on a Resume at the First Glance?

This entry was posted in Articles, CV writing and tagged , , , , , on by Andres Herrera.

A resume is your representative or even an ambassador while applying for jobs. Hence, it’s most important to create a superb impression that can get you that interview call and possibly the job.

Therefore, here’s a vital question: What do recruiters look for on a resume at the first glance? What are the elements that should feature on a resume and how long your resume should be to attract employers?

Understandably, these may sound complex questions. However, with some effort, you can create a wonderful resume that actually catches the attention of recruiters at the very first glance.

resume writing

Photo by Magnet.me on Unsplash

What Recruiters Look on Resume at First Glance?

There’re five major elements of your resume that recruiters look for at the first glance. I’ll explain their relevance and how you can improve your resume to make it appealing.

1. Your Career Objective

There’s a huge debate among Human Resources circles whether a career objective on a resume is relevant or not in today’s era. Personally, I believe it is very relevant and important too. That’s because a well-written career objective actually leads a recruiter tor read the resume further.

Unfortunately, most jobseekers tend to write very uninspiring or vague career objectives, which can fit almost any entity for any job. This puts off recruiters. Hence, there’re very high chances your resume might get rejected merely because your career objective is poorly written.

A career objective is your personal vision and mission statement. It should clearly outline what’re your professional and personal goals in life. Yes, personal goals too. Because a career isn’t merely about a job. A career defines your whole lifestyle for a major part of your working life.

2. Skills

It’s worth remembering that skills are totally different from work experience. You might have several years of experience at a specific job. That doesn’t necessarily imply that you possess the skills that a new job requires. Therefore, one of the things that recruiters look on your resume at first glance is your skills that would prove useful to the business, if they hire you.

Therefore, before drafting a resume, the first thing to do is read the job post or job advert thoroughly. Comprehend what skills the recruiter is looking at and the nature of their business. And leverage your skills in line with the recruiter’s needs. Obviously, you won’t have all the skills that a recruiter requires. However, you can pitch as many skills as you have and point out their relevance to the recruiter’s business.

A common mistake that most jobseekers commit is to send a general resume to every recruiter. This doesn’t really entice a recruiter to shortlist you for an interview. Therefore, customizing a resume to suit the skills set required by a recruiter works wonders.

Also, include your soft skills because they matter a lot nowadays. Recruiters also look for desirable soft skills from a resume.

3. Career Graph

If you’re a fresher, the career graph doesn’t matter because you would be applying for the first job. However, do not forget to include any internships and traineeships that you’ve done while completing a course.

Secondly, also highlight any projects that you did while being a student or intern. These could be individual or group projects. The reason: projects speak volumes about your soft skills and aptitude for any specific job.

And for job seekers with some experience, recruiters look at your career graph for an altogether different reason. They wish to learn whether you’re progressing or stagnating in your career. However, a stagnant career graph isn’t something to worry about if that’s exactly the reason you’re looking for a career change.

If your career is going upwards, the recruiter would most likely be impressed and shortlist you for an interview call. That’s because career growth indicates you’re serious about your works and life and interested in the field.

4. Gaps between Jobs

Gaps between jobs on your resume are definitely something that catches the eye of a recruiter at the first glance. Because these gaps can indicate some serious flaws in your career. It indicates you’re changing jobs frequently and these could be due to negative reasons such as addictions, termination, and undesirable behavior, inability to get along with colleagues and seniors, or overall ineptitude, among others.

If you can genuinely justify gaps in your career, it’s fine. If not, never try to patch them up by giving false dates of leaving and joining any job. A simple Employee Background Screening (EBS) check will expose the truth. This can cost your job. Worse, it can create a very poor impression about you in the overall job market and several recruiters might not even consider you for employment, despite having all skills and qualifications.

Never fudge your resume to cover up gaps on your resume. If you’re asked to explain, provide the genuine reason without justifying yourself.

5. Professional & Social Affiliations

Your professional and social affiliations on a resume matter a lot. You could be a member of a professional guild or forum, alumni, social, or even sports and cultural organization. These affiliations always have a story to tell about you which a recruiter will try and grasp at the first glance.

For example, membership of a forum of professionals shows your interest in a specific field and career. It means, you have a vast resource of talent from where you could get ideas or solutions that might help your employer too, albeit indirectly. Membership of a social or cultural organization speaks of your personality traits.

At the same time, be a bit careful if you’re adding affiliations to any political or religious organizations. The employer may see things in a different light. While you can mention these political or religious affiliations casually, never use them to leverage your application for a job. That’s in very poor taste.

In Conclusion

If you pay attention to these five elements that recruiters look on a resume at the first glance, there’re high chances you might land an interview call. Also, I would suggest you read the difference between a curriculum vitae and a resume because the two are distinct and different documents.

Author: Natasha Shetty

Virtual Job Search: 3 Tips for Job Seekers

This entry was posted in Articles, Careers advice, CV writing, Job interviews and tagged , , , , , , on by Andres Herrera.

In just a few short months so much has changed in the world, let alone in the UK. Industries, schools, homes, and healthcare were thrown into disarray as the pandemic took hold and spread from country to country.

Now, finally, there is light on the horizon. Hiring freezes are easing gradually as the lockdown eases and the country navigates its way into a social-distance compliant future. For job seekers, the major changes will be in the job search and job logistics. It is less likely that a job candidate will meet with a recruiter or hiring manager in person and more likely to be a virtual job search experience. Likewise, many employers are strengthening their remote workforces and hiring on a work-from-home (WFH) and work-from-anywhere (WFA) basis.

When you are looking for your new job opportunity you might find that you are invited to interviews via Zoom or a similar video conferencing software app. To get the best from a virtual job search take a look at our tips below.

Virtual Job Search Video interview

Photo by Allie on Unsplash.

The New Virtual Job Search

There is increased competition for jobs compared to the start of the year. To stand out, make sure your CV is up to date, that your most relevant experience shines through. CVs should be easy to read, fuss-free, and each job listed should include the relevant tasks that suit the job you are applying for.

Job advertising will remain online with job sites picking up more and more new jobs over the coming weeks and months. Stay ahead of the competitors by signing up to job alerts for the roles that interest you most. That way you will have them delivered straight to your inbox.

Be ready to apply quickly for new jobs as some employers start the interview process as applications come in. Getting your application in first could see you getting in front of the hiring manager sooner than others,” says Ken Little, a career writer at Australia2Write and Write My X.

Practice Your Virtual Interview Skills

You may have been on video call during lockdown for work and fun, and would be forgiven for thinking a virtual interview would be similar. Though the technology is the same, a virtual interview will be much more formal than even the work calls you have had. When you are invited to a video interview make sure you have the all right details. You should know who you are meeting, when the interview is, and what technology is being used. Don’t assume anything, ask for details if they are not given up front.

Practising your interview skills beforehand is a must for any job process. With virtual interviews, it is more important than ever. Rope in a friend or two to play the role of interviewer and set up a mock interview video call. Mock interviews are a great way for you to build confidence and spot any nervous tics you need to manage.

Whatever the job, always dress appropriately and preferably professionally for your interview no matter where or how it takes place.

On the day of your interview, find a quiet spot in your home where you won’t be distracted or disturbed. Clear any clutter from around so there are no distractions that might catch the hiring managers eye. “Switch on your camera before you interview so you can see in advance if the space around you is clear and close the door so no pets or kids come in,” says Hugo Davy, an editor at Britstudent and Nextcoursework.

Keep An Open Mind

It goes without saying that some industries and professions have been hit harder by Covid-19. These will be slower to restart the hiring process as they try to rebuild. This means that for many people the next job move may require them to adapt or pivot in their careers or take the advice of Sheryl Sandberg and move sideways when you can’t move up. This can be daunting but can also lead to great opportunities that you maybe hadn’t considered previously.

Adapting does not have to mean changing industry or profession completely but can also mean using your skills and experience in a new way. Keep an open mind when seeking a job and be aware of all your abilities, not just those you have used in your most recent employment.

Author: Michael Dehoyos
_
Michael is a job editor at PhD Kingdom and Assignment Writing Service. He assists companies in their hiring strategy concepts, and contributes to numerous sites and publications. Also, he is a writer at Origin Writings.

CV Writing Tips for Landing Your Dream Internship

This entry was posted in Careers advice, CV writing and tagged , , on by Andres Herrera.

An internship could be your first step into a dream career. Unfortunately, however, places are often limited to school leavers and graduates all vying for the same positions.

To secure an interview you will need to outdo the competition with a really strong CV. Let’s take a look at some top CV writing tips to help you get that internship.

Writing a CV for an internship position

Photo by KOBU Agency on Unsplash

Before you start

Before you rush off and start writing your CV, you need to do some research. Check the internship’s job description to find out everything you can about the role you are applying for.

You should check:

  1. Which keywords have been used?
  2. Which skills are needed?
  3. What experience do they want?

You will also need to know more about the company and industry in general.

Now you know what the employer is looking for, you should aim to demonstrate why you are the perfect fit by including it in your CV.

Writing your CV

When it comes to writing your CV, keep the recruiter in mind at all times. Thanks to your research, you know exactly what they are looking for — so tell them what they want to hear! Of course, you could always hire a professional CV writing service to do this for you.

Divide your CV into these five sections:

1. Contact details

Contact details are an absolute must on your CV. Include your name, address, telephone number and email so the recruiters can get back to you if (and when) you are successful.

2. Personal statement

Add a personal statement to your CV to briefly tell the employer why you will be perfect for the internship position. Don’t go over the top — a short paragraph detailing who you are, what you can offer and your career aims is enough.

3. Employment history

As someone taking their first steps into the industry, you may not have an extensive and relevant employment history — don’t worry, we’ll discuss that later.

But if you do have the industry-relevant experience, make sure to include it. Add your role, the name of the company, its location, website and the dates you were employed.

Next, detail your responsibilities and successes for each role — again, make sure to highlight any achievements that suit the role you are applying for.

4. Education and qualifications

Add your education plus any academic or professional qualifications you might have. Include the name of the institution, qualification and dates you attended.

If your recent school or university education is relevant to the internship you are applying to you can give your education more prominence, particularly if you are lacking relevant work experience.

5. Other skills

Finally, an ‘other skills’ section is a great place to include extra-curricular activities that are relevant to the internship. If you have done any volunteering that your potential employer will find attractive, then make sure to add it, highlighting the internship-relevant parts.

Overall, you should keep your CV to a maximum of two A4 pages in length.

What to do if you lack experience

The reason you are applying for an internship is probably that you want to gain more industry-relevant work experience. So what should you do to make sure your CV shines if you haven’t already worked in that industry?

  1. Highlight relevant strengths. Just because you may not have had a job in the industry, that doesn’t mean you have no experience at all. Work experience, volunteering, community and academic projects all count. Remember to highlight skills that you know the company is looking for.
  2. Push your best skills. If you are going to include more general skills, make sure you back them up with relevant examples. For example, if a company is looking for someone who is a “team player”, then you might want to highlight a time you worked successfully in a group. Wherever possible, include tangible results such as a percentage increase in sales.
  3. Utilise the layout. You don’t have to stick to the traditional method of laying out a CV in chronological order. Instead, put your most relevant experience at the top to highlight your most applicable skills to the role.
  4. Include a cover letter. Cover letters are a great way to highlight your most relevant skills and how they will benefit the company you want an internship with. Include a cover letter and let the recruiter know why you are the person they are looking for.

Conclusion: CV Writing Tips for Landing Your Dream Internship

Writing a CV for an internship and writing a CV for a job are very similar skills.

You always want to know what the employer is looking for and then demonstrate, with tangible results, why you have those skills.

Similarly, there are things in both you definitely don’t want to include. Typos are a big no-no, as are jargon, buzzwords and lies.

The main difference between the two CVs is that when you apply for an internship you may not yet have the relevant work experience. Instead, highlight other areas of your life that demonstrate why you are going to be an asset to the company during your time there.

Author: Andrew Arkley
_
Andrew is the founder of PurpleCV, one of the UK’s leading CV writing providers. He has personally written over 3,000 CVs, has over 15 years’ experience in recruitment at a senior level and has conducted thousands of interviews, so he knows precisely what it takes to land a job!

 

 

How to Get Your CV Noticed by the Right People

This entry was posted in Articles, Careers advice, CV writing and tagged , , , , on by Andres Herrera.

So, you’ve decided it’s time to find a new job and you’ve created a killer CV to help you do it.

Now you need to elevate your job search and ensure your CV is being seen by the people who’ll give you access to the role of your dreams. But how can you do this?

With so much competition for the top roles, it’s essential to get in the mindset of a marketer and ensure your CV is being seen by the right people.

In the guide below, we’ll look at five ways you can get your CV noticed and secure yourself that all-important interview.

How to Get Your CV Noticed by the Right People

Start with a strong CV

Before your CV is seen, you need to make sure it’s up to scratch. This means choosing a clear and concise layout which enables the recruiter to quickly find the information they need.

Be sure to highlight your relevant key skills, top achievements, qualifications and previous work experience. Also, use keywords and skills from the job description throughout, to prove to the recruiter that you’re a good fit for the role.

Additionally, before you do anything with your CV, you need to make sure you’ve proofread it several times. If you submit an application that is full of mistakes, you might stand out – but for all the wrong reasons!

Sign up to job boards

Once you’ve written a strong CV, it’s time to start putting it out there. One of the best ways to find the best roles and get noticed is by signing up to job boards.

It might sound simple, but most candidates don’t utilise this trick – and recruiters often use the sites to search for potential hires.

Simply register for your chosen job board(s) and upload a generic version of your CV. You can even sign up for email alerts from each job board, so relevant roles are sent straight to your inbox as soon as they’re live.

Go to a recruitment agency

In today’s digital world, it might seem a little outdated (and sometimes daunting) to meet with recruiters face-to-face. But this can be a highly beneficial way to get your CV in front of the right people.

Their job is to find you a job, so it’s in their best interest to work closely with you and get your CV out to the right employers!

If you do decide to meet with a recruiter, treat it like an interview. Go along with a copy of your CV, make sure you’re looking smart and be confident in your abilities. The better the impression you leave, the keener they’ll be to put you forward for an interview.

Make the most of social media

Using social media is a fantastic way to be proactive in your job search.

Platforms like Facebook have industry-specific job pages where people can share their vacancies. What’s more, searching for hashtags or following your favourite companies online can help you to find other exciting job opportunities.

However, LinkedIn is the obvious winner in terms of job searching. Make sure your profile is complete and up-to-date, with a professional photo, and turn your career interests to ‘on’. This lets potential employers and recruiters know that you’re open to new opportunities.

Consider sending speculative applications

A speculative application is one in which you send your CV and cover letter to an organisation you would like to work for, to enquire about any vacancies. This is done despite the fact they aren’t actively advertising any roles.

Writing speculative applications can be tricky at first, but once you get to grips with this it can be a great way to find your dream role.

To send a speculative application, you’ll need to create a tailored cover letter, which you’ll paste into the body of the email. You should discuss why you’d be interested working for the specific company (generic emails won’t get you anywhere), what type of role you’d like to be considered for and why you’d make a great hire. Remember to attach your CV and add your contact details to your signature.

Get your CV noticed

If you want to ensure your CV is being seen by the right people, then you need to be proactive in your job search. Rather than simply applying to job advertisements, get your CV noticed by following the steps above. You’ll be on your way to securing a job interview before you know it!

Author: Andrew Fennell
_
Andrew is the founder of CV writing advice website StandOut CV. He is a former recruitment consultant and contributes careers advice to websites like Business Insider, The Guardian and FastCompany.