Improve Your Entry-Level Resume

Writing an entry-level resume can be a snap, even when you have only a little work experience under your belt.

The trick is to make a lot out of a little by emphasizing your unique abilities.

These 5 tips will help your entry-level resume stand up to scrutiny and stand out from the pack!

1. Maximize your experience.

It’s effortless and looks streamlined, but listing only your previous employers and job titles on your resume can leave potential employers not only unimpressed, but also wondering what exactly you did.

Add two or three bullet points for each position, detailing a few of your primary (and most impressive) responsibilities in the order that they apply to the position you’re seeking. To make these positions really pop, use strong adjectives like “implemented,” “created” and “maintained” to describe just how instrumental you were in your previous positions.

You can also include volunteer work on your resume if it shows necessary skills. You’ll expand your credentials while also tailoring your experience to fit the job. And if you happened to volunteer abroad, make sure you highlight that fact as future employers are keen to recruit new hires with international backgrounds.

2. Show your range.

Employers know you are more than just the jobs you’ve had.

“Past experiences” on your resume can include more than just previous jobs. Detailing your proficiency in a foreign language from studying abroad or specific computer programs can add a lot of value to your resume.

Even highlighting unrelated but important extracurricular activities can reflect your commitment to a goal — plus, you never know when an employer might bond with you over a shared love of water-skiing!

3. Use their language.

Incorporating words or phrases from a job listing into your resume is a great way to catch prospective employers’ eyes. If they’re looking for a “hard-working team player,” you might mention in your resume that you thrive in “team” environments and throw yourself into “hard work.” You’ll leave your employers musing that they couldn’t have said it better themselves.

4. Provide references – even if you aren’t asked.

For job-seekers with little work experience, references can be a huge asset to any entry-level resume. References can attest to your dedication and drive, even if you haven’t had many chances to prove your abilities in a work environment.

Even if references aren’t required in your application, why leave them out? Consider including two or three references on your resume. It’s an added convenience, and proves you have people ready to vouch for your skills.

5. Sell yourself!

When writing an entry-level resume, you might not have the experience that other positions require, but you don’t have to apologize or sell yourself short. Even if you can list only a couple of past accomplishments, you can describe the skills you’ll bring to future positions.