Tired of reading the phrase ‘experience necessary’ on every job advert? If you’re breaking into a career for the first time, you can’t let this phrase put you off. If everyone needed experience to get their first job, no-one would ever get onto the career ladder and pretty soon we’d all be unemployed. Whilst employers may favor applicants who’ve worked in the trade before, there are many other ways to impress these employees and show them that you have what it takes to work for their company. Here are just a few ways to breaking into your dream career without experience.
Having an education behind you shows that you’re smart, and every employer wants smart employees. Numerous studies have shown that higher education leads to a lower chance of unemployment and access to better pay. Of course, some education is likely to be more relevant than others – you’ll find it easier to get a marketing job with a marketing degree than you will with a chemistry degree. Some education can offer you job relevant skills, which can be as beneficial as experience such as this communications masters degree online. It’s worth noting that some degrees also offer the opportunity of work experience such as sandwich courses and employer-sponsored courses.
Some employers may have reservations about taking you on without experience for a paid role, however when it comes to voluntary work, many employers will be much more willing to take you on. Whilst you may have reduced responsibilities, this can still be an effective way to gain necessary experience that you can then put on your CV. Some employers will advertise voluntary positions such as these accountancy voluntary roles. In other cases, you may be better off approaching employers directly. A week or two or voluntary experience may be all you need to give you that advantage. Some voluntary positions may even lead onto paid roles if you’re able to prove yourself as a valuable asset to the company.
Network with the right people
Often it can pay to know the right people – a friend who already is in your chosen industry may be able to put in a good word to their employer. You can get to know people in your industry by attending events related to your trade and hanging out in places where they hang out (for example, if you want a job in programming, you could try attending hackathons and software conferences). You may also be able to connect to people on LinkedIn.
Take up relevant hobbies/interests
Simply having a proven passion for the field could be enough to convince an employer that you’re the right fit. Consider joining social clubs related to your trade or taking on personal projects. For example, if you’re trying to break into law, consider joining debate clubs and potentially starting a blog/vlog discussing legal news or advice. If you want to get into veterinary care, you could get involved with animal charities and try owning different types of pets. Enthusiasm is the most important quality you can have when trying land a job – so prove to employers you’re enthusiastic.