Little experience doesn’t mean an employer won’t call you for an interview. A resume is a bit like a glass that’s half empty or half full. It’s up to you to bring out the best in yourself. Here are five tips to make your glass look half full.
Set a clear career goal
The objective is central to the CV, whether or not you have experience. The past can never be as important as the future you see in the company you are applying for. This is the time to be specific so that the employer will notice you. Avoid vague sentences. The employer wants to know your intentions in relation to the job offer. This career goal is best achieved in the short term. This is not the time to project yourself into the distant future; you will have the opportunity to answer this question in an interview, if you are asked.
Structure your CV in order of importance
This advice seems obvious, but many resumes are not structured to build on the strengths of the candidates. You don’t have any experience, but your education matches the job you want? Put this section in the first few elements of your CV.
Detail your studies
List the main courses you have taken during your program of study, specifying the knowledge you have acquired, especially that which is necessary for the job. If you have taken practical courses, such as a moot court, mention it. Above all, don’t just name the knowledge you acquired without mentioning its application. Theory means nothing to an employer if it is not applied to a practical skill. An example of putting knowledge into practice? Writing a communication plan.
Customize your skills
The proper writing of skills depends on your analysis of the job offer at the outset. The goal here is not to re-write the job offer word for word. You can use a word, for example the most useful keyword in the offer, and subtly add it to your sentence to show the employer that you have understood the reality of their business. To understand this reality, you need to understand what the company is looking for and try to project yourself into the job on a daily basis.
Feel free to include small jobs, internships and volunteer activities.
This is not the time to be “complexed” by your experiences. All life experience is worth analyzing because it can reveal knowledge or skills that are job-related. The same reasoning applies to volunteering. Not only do some volunteer activities require the same responsibilities as a paid job, but it often shows employers your dedication and commitment. It is not always necessary to specify that it is an internship or a volunteer activity; you can list it in the “Work experience” section without distinction. You will have the opportunity to provide more details to the employer during an interview, if necessary.
Finally, keep in mind that your CV should not remain the same from one job application to the next. You must customize the objective, work experience and skills sections of your CV to match the job posting.