Whether you’re recently out of school or trying to break into a new field, you might come across a problem when you’re trying to create a compelling resume: You don’t have any work experience to list. Since experience and work history makes up a large portion of most resumes, what are you supposed to do?  

Here’s how to craft a compelling resume without work experience to list: 

Highlight other areas besides work experience.

If you don’t have much work experience to speak of, you’ll need to highlight other areas on your resume. Hopefully, you have experience outside of a paid job to discuss – an internship, volunteer experience, or a mentorship, for example. List these in place of work experience and detail how these experiences shaped you and will help you approach your job in the field you’re trying to get into. Even discussing jobs in other fields entirely can be helpful. You’ll just need to discuss how the work you did relates to the job you’re applying for.  

Focus on your skills.

Even if you don’t have work experience, you have skills. Whether it’s skills you learned through your schooling or more general skills, it’s worth putting on your resume. Make this section a bigger portion of your resume to compensate for the lack of work experience. And remember that soft skills are just as important as the technical or hands-on skills that you might possess – it’s perfectly acceptable to discuss your customer service experience, your communication skills, or your problem-solving capabilities as long as you tie them back to the job you’re applying for and how you’ll use those soft skills to your advantage.  

Remember your education.

If you have education in your area of expertise, this will be a big thing to focus on if you have little or no work experience to list. Highlight what you studied, where, when, and your GPA. You might even add a short description describing how your education helped prepare you to enter your field. 

Include references.

Professors, teachers, mentors, instructors, supervisors from previous jobs… including some references on your resume can be a big help when you’re trying to compensate for a lack of experience. These people can vouch for your work ethic and reliability even if you don’t have direct experience in the field you’re trying to enter. 

Put Your Resume To Good Use 

Ready to use your resume to land the jobs you want? Let HCR Personnel Solutions help. Get in touch with our recruiters to get started on your job search. 

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