Learning how to write a CV with no experience shouldn’t be taken for granted, especially if you want to gain a competitive advantage in the work market. This is because your employability and chances in the job market depend heavily on the quality of your CV.
Whether you are a job seeker or a fresh graduate with no professional work history, a well-written CV can boost your confidence and create work opportunities for you. For this reason, I will share a step-by-step approach on how to write a CV with no experience. This article helps you market your transferrable skills through your CV.
What is a Curriculum Vitae (CV)?
A curriculum vitae, commonly known as a CV, is a document that contains an overview of a job seeker’s personal information, including their academic, and professional qualifications. This document is a must-have when applying for any job.
What should I write in my CV if I have no experience?
Here’s how to lay out your first CV to depict professionalism and earn points from your recruiters.
Choose the correct format
Studies on LinkedIn show that an average recruiter takes maximum of seven minutes to scan a CV. To avoid a haphazard layout that will further announce your shortcomings, the skills-based format is the best option for an entry-level CV. This is because it centers on your skills and qualifications without exposing your lack of experience.
Start with a header
A header is the opening part of your CV. It must contain your personal information, including: your full name, phone number, email, and relevant social media page. Recruiters may need these details to contact you if need be.
Create a compelling skills summary
A CV may suffer due to a lack of chronological work history except it draws support from an abundance of career-specific skills.
In place of work history, try and focus on highlighting core skills that match the job description. Make this the theme of your CV, and write an impressive summary of these skills right after the header section.
Focus on educational achievement
Another way you can strengthen your resume is by focusing on your academic qualifications. List every degree, certification, internship, awarding institution, and graduation date in reverse chronological order.
In other words, highlight your educational achievements from the latest to the least to garner the attention of recruiters.
Add your experience with extracurricular activities and volunteer services
In this segment, you should recall all the extracurricular activities and volunteer jobs for clubs or organizations you have ever engaged in. Select those that can help you qualify for a specific job and add them to the CV.
These responsibilities could count as informal work experience.
Enumerate your technical and workplace Skills
Most recruiters value workplace skills above work history. Specify all your soft and hard skills that will aid your proficiency using bullet points.
Also, indicate any in-demand skills you may still be developing.
List your references
A list of references should be added at the end of your CV, especially if requested on the job advertisements. Referees may include previous employers, fellow employees, supervisors, or teachers who can attest to your credibility.
However, it is necessary to get their consent before adding them to the list. Through this list, prospective employers can rate your level of proficiency and professionalism.
Proofread your document
Proofreading your CV is another skill you need as you learn how to write a CV with no experience. Try to check your document for grammar or typographical errors.
Understand that an error-free document is proof of your attention to detail and excellent organizational skills.
How can I make my CV stand out without experience?
- Try not to exceed one page or make your CV a maximum of two pages.
- Ensure your document has no spelling or typo errors.
- Focus on skills that fit the job description.
- Use action verbs to relay your achievements
- Maintain the correct format for an entry-level CV
What are the benefits of writing a CV?
- A CV communicates your professionalism and work readiness to recruiters.
- Through a CV, one can express interest in a job position.
- It helps share your growth and qualifications as a professional.
- It gives you a competitive edge in the job market.
- A CV encourages professional development.
Frequently Asked Questions on how to write a CV with no experience
Can I include my online certifications?
Yes. Certifications from online courses can boost a CV with no experience.
Can I exaggerate my abilities?
A good CV must be authentic. Obvious exaggeration and dishonesty may cause prospective employers to disqualify your application.
In conclusion, work experience is good but not as important as a compelling CV. This creates a lasting impression on an employer. Learning how to write a CV helps you polish your skills and present your abilities in a way that dims your limited experience.