Can you write a resume without experience and still get the job? The answer is yes. Because many job seekers don’t realize that experience can mean more than your “employment history” alone.
If you don’t have much experience, consider including the following items in your resume:
- Academic success
- Internships, volunteer work, and extracurricular activities
- Hobbies and passion projects
Now, let’s go through these sections one by one.
Showcase Academic Successes
If you’re a student, it’s always a good idea to showcase academic achievements. They explain why you don’t have a work history to show and tell your future employer that you can prioritize what matters most.
Some achievements to include are:
- Honor student recognition
- Scholarships and fellowships
- Publications and academic event participation, such as symposiums
Because a student’s job is to excel in school, presenting academic successes says a lot about your integrity and ethics. Alternatively, you can use a CV template instead of a regular resume template because CVs focus more on academic performances.
Build a List of Hard and Soft Skills
It’s okay if you don’t have much experience so long you have the right skills. Plenty of jobs nowadays are open for entry-level candidates. When building a skill list, make sure to include both hard skills and soft skills.
It’s also best practice to mention any relevant courses and training for these skills to highlight your qualifications. Keep in mind you want to portray yourself as an all-rounded candidate. That means you should include both technical skills and people skills.
Volunteering and Extracurricular Activities
Volunteer work and extracurricular activities are both perfect substitutes for employment histories. If you need to write a resume without work experience, it’s best to use other activities to prove your capabilities.
For example, humanitarian volunteer works tell the employer you’re a team player and care about others’ wellbeings. Meanwhile, professional internships, competitions, and other activities can further support your technical skills.
Some good items to include are:
- Participation in the student committee
- Fundraising events you’ve helped with
- School events, such as stageplays, performances, and holiday events
- Volunteering for nonprofit organizations
If you don’t know where to start, try to look up some high school student resume examples. Those are great references for people without enough work experience.
Talk About Your Hobbies
What about hobbies and passion projects? Nowadays, hiring managers look far beyond technical qualifications because companies care about building cultures. Therefore, you need to show the recruiter why you’re a perfect fit for the position and the company.
Believe it or not, hobbies say a lot about your personality. If a company focuses on outdoor activities, it won’t make sense for you or the employer if you aren’t interested in those things.
In conclusion, it is possible to get a job without work experience. You just need to write your resume properly. Whether you are in high school, a college student, or a new grad, you can use alternative experiences to make up for lack of employment history.
Showcase your academic achievements, volunteer work, extracurricular activities, and skills and qualifications. In other words, focus on what you have instead of what you lack.
Good luck job hunting!