When You Have No Relevant Work Experience

Applying for a new job can be daunting enough even for those with years of relevant experience, but when you’re fresh out of school, a uni graduate, or making a massive career change, it can be difficult to know where to start when you have no relevant professional experience.

​1. Start With Your Education and Training

It’s understandable for school leavers and entry-level applicants to start with their educational background instead of professional experience. There are a lot of relevant skills and experiences you developed during your education that you can include on your resume.

Primarily,  your educational background tells a lot about your intellectual capacity, academic strengths, and your ability to transform learned material into actual skills.

Consider also including your sporting memberships or participation in additional school activities. This will give employers insight into your ability to manage a schedule, multi-task and commit to team projects. Give thought to tasks assigned to you that are relevant to the position you want to apply for and specify the skills you used to accomplish these tasks.

2. Follow It Up With Transferable Skills

No matter how inexperienced, everyone has a degree of skill in a few basic areas. It’s simply a matter of presenting those skills in a way that will impress potential employers by your ability to link seemingly irrelevant skills to something of substance and value for the job your applying for.

Consider pocket money jobs and other activities you were involved in and look for transferable skills such as leadership, research, ability to work independently and work with others. Also, you no doubt picked up other useful skills for administrative tasks like computer knowledge, presentation experience, and working as part of a team during your academic experience.

Ask yourself what you’re good at, what your natural abilities are and how they apply to the workplace. Think about whether you have people skills, organization skills, or problem-solving skills. You might have a natural talent relevant to the field your applying for.

3. Combine Your Resume With a Strong Cover Letter

Cover letters serve an important role in introducing yourself to employers and help make up for a lack of experience. They provide an opportunity to express your interests, goals, and ideas and how these benefit the company. Be specific when outlining your real-life experience to show how your abilities compensate for your lack of experience in the workplace. Show employers why you are an asset and this will advance you in the application process.

Everybody has something they can use when applying for a job. Remember, employers are looking for people with drive and commitment, rather than just professional experience. Present your skill or talent in a way that highlights your value. If your still not sure how to go about it, ask a professional like CV Savvy for advice.