How to Prove You Deserve the Job When You Have No Direct Experience

Want to change careers and break into a new field? It can be tricky when you have no direct experience. However, you are more than the sum of your job experience.

Making a career switch can feel like starting over, but that’s not the case. Throughout your career, you’ve developed many transferable skills that translate to other job titles and industries. Some of your skills may be inborn personality traits that you don’t think of as job skills, such as:

  • Organization
  • Communication
  • Relationship building
  • Teamwork
  • Attention to detail
  • Leadership
  • Adaptability
  • Problem-solving
  • And more

Do any of those skills look familiar? Knowing which transferable skills you possess will help you highlight them on your resume and in job interviews to show you have the aptitude to grow into a new role. Here are ways to focus on your transferrable skills and earn an opportunity to shine.

Analyze Job Descriptions

Examine job descriptions for the kind of job you would like to have. What kind of skills are required to be successful in that role? Have any of your past jobs, volunteer experience, or personal experiences helped you to develop the necessary skills?

Examine Your Technical Skills

Many hard skills are transferable across industries. For instance, if you’ve mastered QuickBooks, Microsoft Word, Excel, or other programs, you could just as easily use them in a different role in a new industry. You may be more qualified than you think!

Highlight Your Transferable Skills

Use the keywords from job descriptions to tailor the experience section in your resume to reflect your skills. Some job seekers create a “skills” section at the top of their resume to make it easy for hiring managers to identify their strengths. Consider showcasing your transferable skills in the “About” section on your LinkedIn profile and writing a cover letter to explain how those skills will help you be successful in your desired role, despite your lack of experience.

Practice Your Interview Pitch

Be ready to discuss how your transferable skills relate to the job during an interview. For example, if leadership is required for the role, prepare examples of times you have taken the lead in previous roles or in your personal life. Research common interview questions and think about how you might craft honest answers that showcase the skills you possess that align with the role. Everybody starts somewhere, and today’s employers are eager to hire hardworking individuals with aptitude and motivation. By taking the time to discover your transferable skills, you can open up new career options and position yourself for success.

Looking for a job change?

Need help identifying and leveraging your transferable skills to find a new career opportunity? Contact your local PrideStaff recruiter for skills assessment, resume assistance, and help finding a great job that matches your skills, interests, and personality.

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