Do You Need a Resume for Your First Job?

do you need a resume for your first job

Stepping into the job market for the first time in the twenty-first century can seem overwhelming. Whether it is your first job out of college or your first high school summer gig, there are so many avenues for putting yourself out there professionally. LinkedIn and Indeed are two of the most popular online platforms used to explore careers in business and fill out applications–but there are many, many more.

On these platforms and on company websites with career postings, a resume is always necessary when applying for a job. It is your professional handshake and first impression with most employers. 

If you do not have any prior employment experience or have never held a formal position at an established company, you should still compose a resume. You will want to know the best way to format your resume to reflect the relevant experience or education you have. 

If you’re interested in using the most reliable resume writing services, you don’t need to look any further. Experts at theJub can help elevate your resume and make it competitive against other applicants.

How to Format a Resume Without Previous Work Experience

1. Don’t Stress

Take a deep breath–applying for your first job is a big step and everyone has done it at some point in their lives. Your resume does not have to be more than one page when you are just embarking on your career journey. No one is expecting a novel, but they are expecting some experience that makes you a good candidate for the job you are applying for.

2. Create the Structure for Your Resume

Most resumes follow the same structure. There are exceptions to this rule, such as if you are working in a creative field or in an industry where a portfolio is necessary to showcase your abilities. However, if you are just starting out, a classic resume structure is a perfect way to dip your toes in the working world.

Here is the basic outline to use when writing your first resume:

  • Header: This includes your name and contact details. All you need is your phone number, email address, and general location (not your street address).
  • Objective: This is a short paragraph (two or three sentences) that describes your career goals. If you are still in school and looking to work in a specific industry, or looking to develop and diversify certain skill sets, this is a great place to briefly summarize this as well as what your current strengths are.
  • Education: List your educational accomplishments starting with your highest level of education (e.g., high school or GED, two-year Associate’s degree, four-year Bachelor’s degree, etc.) and include whether or not you are currently a student. This shows employers that you are actively learning and self-improving, and it can help them get an understanding of your availability and potential.
  • Experience: If you haven’t worked before, don’t sweat it. Volunteer experience is always relevant, as are any committees you served on in school or extracurricular activities that helped you build relevant skills. Were you in any clubs? Did you babysit? Everything you’ve done has helped you to build professional skills, even if you don’t realize it. Take a moment and reflect on groups you’ve joined and odd jobs you’ve taken.
  • Skills: In this section, highlight your key abilities. Can you use Microsoft Office? Are you skilled in public speaking? Can you code? Consider hard skills (skills acquired through schooling or formalized training) and soft skills (character traits such as team player, natural leader, strong communicator, etc.). All of these are valuable in the workplace.

You can choose one of several resume formats that best suits your experience and skills.

3. Tailor the Resume to Your Desired Job

If you’ve already got your eye on a particular position, you can tailor your resume to align with the job requirements. Look over the job posting carefully and note what requirements they are looking for and what relevant experience you have.

Are they looking for a self-starter? Consider any board positions you had on clubs or fundraisers for sports teams you were a part of. Do they want someone who is tech-savvy? Mention software programs you are familiar with and any technical skills you have. Think outside the normal scope of ‘work,’ and you will be surprised how many boxes you can check.
Wondering if you should put your image on your resume? Check out our recent article!

Author: Becky is a contributor for theJub. She’s a writing and talent acquisition specialist who loves to apply her skills through creative writing and editing.

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