The Ultimate Guide for Grads: Resume Without Experience

By Richard Nolan

Having no direct work experience should not stop you in your search for a position you would be absolutely perfect for!


Having no direct work experience should not stop you in your search for a position you would be absolutely perfect for!

You might have no background to meet the requirements, but all that can be compensated with your soft skills, volunteer work you did in the past (or the present), and profound knowledge you gained at college.

All you need to do is present all the relevant experience you have so far in the most favorable light. And in this article, we will show you how to write a resume that will help you get the job you want!

How to create an excellent resume for a graduate student

  1. Make your summary flawless.
    The summary you are writing should contain a “hook” that would make you stand out from the crowd. On average, recruiters state that “On average, every corporate job opening attracts 250 resumes. But only 4 to 6 of these people will be called for an interview, and only 1 of those will be offered a job.”
    You do not have a second chance to make a positive first impression. And you only get one chance to interest the HR specialist to read your resume. So, use this chance wisely and add a hook in the very first sentence of the resume.
  2. Start with your selling points.
    The first thing a recruiter sees on your resume should be your biggest point. Thus, if you have no work experience, start with your education. This is especially the case if you are looking for a position in the same niche.
    However, if you are not too proud of your education or grades, then pick a different selling point. Maybe you took part in a project that you are particularly proud of or volunteered at a well-known and respected organization. Even internships will do at this point.
    Make sure to prioritize your experiences and add them to your resume according to those priorities you chose.
  3. Emphasize the soft skills.
    You cannot afford not putting emphasis on the soft skills you have. Not only at some position they are crucial, but they can often make up for the lack of experience.
    Thus, fast learners can pick up the latest trends in the industry much faster than those specialists that have worked here for years and believe that their way is the only right way.
    So, do not be shy when talking about your vibrant personality: it is this description that can give you a significant advantage in the market.
  4. Provide examples.
    You might be a new John H. Patterson, but unless you know how to write a resume that would make you the best choice for an employer, your CV will be left unnoticed.
    Every statement on your resume must be supported with an example illustrating and proving it.
    If you state that you are an excellent team player, then you can describe a situation in which you being a team player helped (like you have taken your baseball team on a brand-new level at college by suggesting a better strategy for the game). Or maybe you got the highest grades because you worked hard and diligently on the tasks you were trusted with.
    We are sure you can find examples that best prove your point. For some of them, you will just need some time!
  5. Keep it short.
    Recruiters do not have too much time to read every CV sent. So, they simply scan through each of the letters. And if you do not want to get your resume into a pile of CVs that did not catch the reader’s attention, you need to play it smart and keep it short by to the point.
    For instance, the Monster states that it is better for those applicants with less than 10 years of experience to keep it shorter than one page.
    You have no relevant experience to demonstrate, so no need to waste your and recruiter’s time on empty talks.
  6. Fine-tune your resume with the job opening.
    Whenever you apply for a position, you need to rewrite your CV to meet the expectation of that specific recruiter. Go step by step through the job description and answer to the needs of the employer with your resume!
    This will double your chances even without relevant job experience.
  7. Add keywords.
    Your goal is to find the keywords in the description and use them in your CV. However, be honest. If the company is looking for a team player, and you know that you are most effective when working on your own, do not add this point to your resume. Because even if you get the job in the long, you won’t be happy about it, and the employer will be frustrated with his decision in your favor.
    Besides, keywords help companies find the perfect resumes via search engines. So, keep basic SEO requirements in mind when completing your resume.
  8. Sell it!
    You need to honestly believe in every word on your resume. In other words, you need to sell yourself to the potential employer.
    Otherwise, you will seem like a mediocre graduate with no relevant experience or ambitions to pursue. And that is a kind of employee no wise business person wants to hire!

A fine-tuned and well-written resume is more likely to help you nail the job no matter whether you are an experienced specialist or a newbie to the issue. Both of these categories need to know these basics, but they are crucial for the latter.

You cannot afford to craft a poorly-structured resume that will not attract a potential employer to it. So, take your time and compose a winning resume by following our instructions. This task has never been easier!

Do you know any other helpful tips on resume writing for graduate students that we did not include in our article? Please feel free to share them with us in the comments area. We welcome the fresh perspectives and profound expertise!

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