StandOut CV

First CV templates – Write a winning CV for your first job

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If you’re looking to land your first job, you’re going to need a CV.

Writing your first CV is a big challenge, but I believe anybody can create a strong CV – even when you don’t have any work experience.

In this post, I’m going to explain what a CV is, and show you 3 example first CV templates along with some CV writing guidance, so that you can create your own CV that will get you plenty of job interviews.

Writing your first CV

What is a CV?

  • Example first CV templates

How to write your first CV

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A CV (short for curriculum vitae) is a written document which you send to employers when you apply for jobs, and it contains relevant information about you, such as your education, skills, and knowledge.

It’s usually a 1 – 2 page document written using a word processor like Microsoft Word or Google Docs .

It’s purpose is to get the attention of employers, and persuade them to call you in for a job interview.

Quick tip: You should think of your CV as your marketing material – like a leaflet or advert for your services as an employee, selling your most valuable skills to employers.

Example first CV template 1

First CV template example

This is an example of a first CV which has been written by a school leaver with no experience.

Although they have no work experience, they have still managed to showcase lots of skills and knowledge that will be impressive to employers and help them get job interviews.

First CV template 2

First CV template 2

First CV template 3

First CV template 3

Now that you’ve seen a good example of a first CV, I will walk you through how to write a CV that will win you lots of job interviews.

Quick tip: Before you start writing your CV, research the types of jobs you will be applying for online and make a list of the skills and knowledge your target employers are looking for – then try to include as many as possible when writing the CV.

Structure and format

The first thing you need to consider when writing your CV, is how easy it will be for recruiters and hiring managers to read it.

Recruiters and hiring managers tend to be very busy and often have to review lots of CVs every day, so you need to make it easy and quick for them to read your CV, and digest the important information

CV formatting

Use these formatting tips to get started;

  • Create a text-based document using Microsoft Word or Google Docs – Don’t add images because they will congest the page.
  • Keep it simple by using a clear font (Arial, Tahomo etc.) and black text on a white background
  • Give it a professional appearance and make it easy to navigate by clearly dividing the CV sections with bold headings and borders
  • Break text up as much as possible using bullet points, to create a pleasant reading experience
  • Keep the CV somewhere between 1 and 2 pages long . If you don’t have any experience, 1 page should be enough

How to structure your first CV

Here’s how you should structure and layout your first CV.

First CV structure

I’ll now run through each of those sections in more detail

Name and contact details

Your name and contact details should be clearly visible at the top of the CV, so that readers know who you are, and how to get in touch with you.

The only contact detail you need to include are your location , telephone number and email address .

You do not need to include your full address, DOB, martial status or anything more – these things are unnecessary at this stage of an application and will waste space

Your CV profile

Your CV profile  (or personal statement ) is an introductory paragraph which sits at the very top of your CV.

It’s the very first thing a reader will see when they open the CV, so you need to ensure that it grabs their attention, and sells your most valuable attributes.

first job cv template

The idea is to give a quick overview of what you have to offer in just a few lines.

Typical things you should include are:

  • Your educational achievements – Grades, subjects, courses, awards
  • Your hard skills – Numeracy, writing, languages, IT system experience etc.
  • Soft skills – Communication, team work, adaptability
  • Your goals – e.g. You want to work in finance, or you want to become a lawyer (you should also write about this in your cover letter )

Quick tip:  If you struggle with spelling and grammar, try our partner’s CV builder

Check out my video guide on writing a CV when you have no experience

Core skills and achievements

If you really want to highlight your most relevant skills for the jobs you’re applying for and show off your achievements – then add a core skills and achievements section like this.

First CV core skills

It’s a simple bullet pointed list of:

  • Your skills that are relevant to the jobs you are applying for
  • Any impressive achievements that you’ve made in or out of school

These short sharp points will jump off the page at readers and ensure they notice them quickly – a great way to make a big first impression.

As a candidate with little or no experience, your education will need to contain plenty of detail.

List the schools/colleges you have attended and grades you have achieved in your GCSE and A levels, along with any other qualifications.

You should also highlight any positions of responsibility you have held in school such as being a prefect or member of a team or club.

Hobbies and interest

Hobbies and interests won’t be too important once you gain more work experience – but right now, they are a great way to demonstrate valuable transferable skills you may possess.

Good examples of hobbies to include are:

  • Sports – Playing for a team or taking part in an individual sport competitively shows determination, patience, teamwork, communication, and many more valuable workplace skills
  • Writing – If you write an online blog or perhaps your own books, this is a great way to show off your written communication skills
  • Ventures – If you sell things on eBay or raise money for charity, this proves that you are motivated, enterprising and helpful
  • Accomplishments – Perhaps you’ve run a marathon or climbed the 3 peaks, these sorts of personal achievements show you have a drive to be successful
  • Volunteering – helping out businesses or charities involves a huge range of valuable skills you can showcase.

References: You don’t need to add references to your CV because employers should only ask for them once they’ve made you a provisional job offer.

Boosting your CV

If you feel that your CV is lacking skills and knowledge, there are plenty of things you can do to add some weight to it – check out the infographic below to learn how.

first job cv template

Who reads your CV?

When you apply for a job, your CV will be read and reviewed by either a hiring manager, or a recruiter.

Recruiters and hiring managers

Hiring managers are people within a company who are looking to hire a person for their team. For example, a shop manager who is looking to hire a shop assistant. This is the person you will normally end up working for directly when you are successful in getting the job.

Recruiters are people whose sole job is to find good candidates for hiring managers. They might work directly for a company, or externally for an agency. They will review your CV and speak with you, before passing your CV on to the hiring manager if you are successful.

If you can impress recruiters and hiring managers by showing them you have the right skills for their jobs, you will get plenty of job interviews and move one step closer to landing your dream job.

And your CV is the key to making that good first impression.

Writing your first CV – conclusion

Writing you first CV will always be a challenge, but if you stick to the guidelines above you can easily create an attractive CV that will attract employers.

Remember to make the document super-easy to read with simple formatting and a logical structure firstly.

Then ensure that you use your education, achievements and hobbies to highlight your most valuable skills.

Good luck with your job search.

First job CV example

  • Free CV template for people applying for the first job
  • Template also works if you don’t have any work experience
  • You only need 60 minutes to customise it for your application
  • Discover how to layout your CV, and what info to include in your CV

first job cv template

Main sections of this page

Don’t hesitate to fast forward to the section you think would be most helpful to you.

  • “First job CV template” ⏩
  • “How to write a CV for a job with no experience” ⏩
  • “Advice for writing a cover letter for your first job” ⏩

First job CV template

[First name] [Surname]

[Your phone number] | [Your email address] | [The town, city or county you currently live in]


[Describe why you want to work for the employer. If you have two or three of the skills required for the job, say you have those skills and how you acquired them.]


  • [Professional qualification or certification]

A Levels: [Subject] (Grade), [Subject] (Grade), [Subject] (Grade)

GCSEs: [Number of GCSEs gained] GCSEs grade [Grades achieved highest-lowest, e.g. 8–4], English (Grade), Maths (Grade)

  • [Soft skill you developed from your hobbies and interests and/or education]
  • [Relevant IT skill]


  • [Achievement from your personal life that demonstrates you that you’re driven to get results]
  • [Achievement from your personal life that demonstrates you have commitment and resilience]


  • [Hobby or interest that either shows you have the skills required for the job or that you’d be a good addition to the organisation]

How to write a CV for a job with no experience

First, see our detailed guides for the basics of writing a great CV:

  • “How to write a CV”
  • “What makes a good CV?”
  • “What personal information should you put on a CV?”
  • “How to write a personal statement for a CV”
  • “How to write your work experience on your CV”
  • “How to write your qualifications on your CV”
  • “How to write your education on your CV”
  • “How to write your hobbies and interests on your CV”
  • “Should you put references on a CV?”
  • “How to make bar work sound good on a CV” – published on Milkround, our sister site
  • “How to describe a fast food job on a CV” – published on Milkround, our sister site

See also the detailed “How to write a cover letter for your first job” guide on Milkround, our sister website dedicated to graduates.

The advice below is specific to people who are applying for their first job.

Figure out your strongest soft skills

We develop soft and hard skills in all walks of life, not just at work.

It’s important you figure which of your soft skills are your strengths, as it’s the best way you can show your employability despite the fact you don’t have any work experience.

You might find it helpful to read these guides on the Milkround website:

  • “What are ‘soft skills’?”
  • “What are ‘hard skills’?”
  • “What are ‘transferable skills’?”
  • “What are some examples of transferable skills?”

Highlight your achievements from your hobbies and interests

If someone has a track record of achieving things from the time they spent pursuing their hobbies and interests, it’s a strong indicator that they have the potential to be a good worker.

That’s because people who achieve things are committed, focused and goal-oriented, all qualities that employers look for.

Include any training you’ve done outside school and/or college

Have you taken any courses that are relevant to the job?

If you have, list them. It might also be useful to briefly describe the different subjects covered by the course.

It doesn’t matter if you took the course online or attended the training.

Advice for writing a cover letter for your first job

first job cv template

  • What you need to include in your cover letter
  • How to layout your cover letter
  • The ideal format for your over letter, in terms of length and fonts

See also the detailed “How to write a cover letter for your first job” guide on Milkround, our sister website dedicated to school leavers and graduates.

first job cv template

  • Free cover letter template for your first job
  • Follows all the latest cover letter writing best practices
  • You only need 30 minutes to customise it for your application
  • Example cover letter shows you how to use the template
  • See how to layout your cover letter, and what info to include in your cover letter
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first job cv template

How To Write Your First Job Resume

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What will this guide do for me?

Related resume guides, covering the basics, how to set up a resume, overcoming resume-writing block, breaking down your first resume, additional sections, sample first job resume, reviewing your resume, frequently asked questions.

At some point we all must go through our first time – our first time creating a resume, that is. Your first resume will lead to your first job and the rest of your career. When creating your first resume, some of the anxieties surround its length, how you write a first resume, and what needs to be on it. It can be particularly difficult knowing how to write a resume with no experience, too.

Fortunately, we’ve put together a comprehensive guide with examples to show you why you need a resume, what a resume needs, how you put all of that together, and how you can have the best one out there (with or without experience). Looking for a quick reference? You can find our first resume FAQ at the end of this post, too.

  • Provide an understanding of what a resume is
  • Explain what your resume can be used for
  • Provide tips to overcome resume writer’s block
  • Show you how to set up a resume
  • Detail the major points that you need to include in your first job resume
  • Highlight successful examples that show these points in action
  • Give inspiration for how your first job resume can be created
  • Answer frequently asked questions on resume building

Enhancv How To Write Your First Job Resume First job resume


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What is a resume?

Your resume is a formal record of your skills, attributes, interests, abilities, prior experience, and relevant expertise in any field. For many people, a resume is off-putting as they don’t think they have any relevant experience nor do they understand how to approach it. One of the hardest steps to overcome with your resume is getting started, so be sure to check out how to overcome that struggle below.

Why do I need one?

Your resume is your conversation starter with any future employer. No resume in the world will be able to speak for you as well as you could yourself, but the aim is to make your resume as comprehensive and concise as possible so the recruiter (the people that hire employees) will want to hear more and offer an interview.

There are many ways that people find employment. However, if your personal network doesn’t give rise to finding a job, and you don’t have any friends that have jobs vacant, your resume is the first step. Think of it as the foundation from which you can build the empire of your career.

Who looks at my resume?

There are two main review systems used by employers. These are recruiter reviews and automated reviews (ATS). In some instances, an organization may run your resume through an automated system that scans for keywords and key details. After that initial screening, a recruiter will further analyze the details on your resume.

As it is possible that your resume will pass through an automated service, it is important to use readable fonts and a format that makes sense.

First things first, you need to set up your resume with the right resume format. There are a few options you can choose from: reverse chronological, functional, or a hybrid of the two.

Here’s the difference between them.

The reverse chronological resume layout emphasizes your work experience, listing them off from the most recent position first. This layout also shows off your qualifications, skills, and education, but work experience is the main focus.

Enhancv How To Write Your First Job Resume First job resume

Since you’re just starting out in the workforce with little to no experience yet, this format may not be the best option for you.

How about the functional resume layout?

This one emphasizes your skills, putting less of the spotlight on your previous work experience. Your skillset takes up most of the page, with only a brief summary of your experience and education at the bottom.

Enhancv How To Write Your First Job Resume First job resume

And finally, the hybrid resume layout is the perfect mix between the reverse chronological and functional formats. The hybrid resume equally focuses on your skills, work experience and educational background.

Enhancv How To Write Your First Job Resume First job resume

For a first job resume, go for either the functional resume layout or the hybrid layout (if you have some experience to talk about).

Enhancv has customizable resume templates for you to choose from to make writing your resume easy.

Formatting tips

Making your resume easy to read and scannable will go a long way in making a great first impression.

Keep these tips in mind when writing your resume:

  • Use a common font, like Times New Roman or Arial
  • Make the font big enough to read (12pt or higher)
  • Bold headings, subheadings, and job titles
  • Use bullet points to organize your points in descriptions
  • Export your resume as a PDF so it looks consistent across all devices and platforms

There are a few sections that are required in a resume; no matter what position you’re going for. Some jobs have restrictions on the formatting, details, and fonts you may use (for example, an Academic Resume), but for the most part, you can start with a blank slate and add what you feel is necessary. The key to building your resume is thinking about three things:

  • What is the job I’m applying for?
  • What is required of me in that role?
  • How do I convey that I fulfill those requirements?

If you keep those three things in mind, you won’t get overwhelmed by what you think should be happening in your resume – instead, you’ll be excited to start working and showing your talents.

Other tips you can use to overcome writer’s block when it comes to your resume are:

  • Speak to your family on how they have written their resumes and what they think might belong to yours
  • Sit down and think about moments you are most proud of
  • Talk to someone who has worked with you on some project or volunteering

While there is no one-size-fits-all way to create a resume, it’s helpful to see some examples of sections you can include. Some things are needed on all resumes no matter what they’re being used for. We’ll focus on those for now.

The first thing the recruiter should see is your name and who you are below it. They’re not going to remember who turned in the resume at the desk or submitted it online. Without your name on your resume, there’s nothing to distinguish your resume from another person’s. It’s reminding the recruiter who you are at a glance.

Enhancv How To Write Your First Job Resume First job resume

2. Contact details

Always include contact details on a resume. This can include your email, phone number, website, and/or LinkedIn. It is necessary to include at least two ways that a recruiter can get in contact with you – just in case one of them doesn’t work.

Do’s and Don’ts:

Enhancv How To Write Your First Job Resume First job resume

3. Personal summary

Chances are, you don’t have a lot of experience when writing your first job resume. This is okay – but you need to find a way to tell the recruiter more about you. A personal summary can be used to explain who you are and what you hope to accomplish from the role. Typically, 2-3 sentences just below your contact details are enough. It doesn’t have to take the form of a paragraph. You can use a Personal Philosophy Section or Most Proud Of (see: additional sections) section to convey more details.

Enhancv How To Write Your First Job Resume First job resume

4. Skills section

In one form or another, you’ll have to mention your specific skills on your resume. This is to show the employer what you’re capable of and what you’ll bring to your role should you be hired.

Some skills that you can mention in your first job resume (with working experience) are:

  • Customer relations (solving customer issues)
  • End of day processing (closing shop)
  • Data processing (inputting stock on excel)
  • Transaction maintenance (working on a checkout)
  • Inventory control (managing stock)

Some skills you can mention in your first job resume (without working experience) are:

  • Proficiency in Office Suite (Word, Excel, Outlook and Powerpoint)
  • Conflict resolution (you’re able to find compromise)
  • Human relations (communication)
  • Innovative problem solving (you can find creative ways to solve problems)
  • Time management (you can get things done on a deadline)

It’s important to include a mix of soft skills and hard skills on your resume.

Hard skills describe your technical or teachable abilities – the ones that are specific to the job.

For example, if you’re applying for a restaurant server position, your hard skills would be things like:

  • Inputting orders
  • Using the POS systems

On top of your hard skills, employers want to hire people who will fit in with their company culture and deliver an amazing experience to their customers. They’re looking for job candidates who have soft skills too.

Soft skills are more personality-based. While hard skills are teachable through training or education, soft skills have more to do with your personal character.

Let’s go back to the restaurant server example. Restaurant managers want to hire servers who have both hard and soft skills to deliver great customer service. These soft skills can be things like:

  • Self-motivated
  • Positive, helpful attitude
  • Great verbal communication
  • Able to work under high pressure

When writing your first job resume, include a mix of your hard and soft skills to show the hiring manager that you’re the well-rounded candidate they need for the job.

Just be sure to give examples that show that you have these skills whenever possible.

5. Previous experience

Your previous experience is a great way to show the recruiter that you can apply all of your skills to the real-world. Employers want to see you’re capable of making a difference in their organization and that you’ll be an important piece of the puzzle in achieving success.

What do I put on my resume if I have no experience?

Before you skim over this section and think you don’t have any previous experience, it doesn’t have to be in a working environment. If you’ve spent time volunteering, babysitting, coaching, leading people at Summer Camp, taking on extra-curricular activities at school, all of these things are previous experience.

The important part of describing your previous experience is to go in-depth about what you accomplished more than what you were responsible for. See an example below for a Library Assistant and Equipment Manager. Make sure everything you mention is measured when possible.

Enhancv How To Write Your First Job Resume First job resume

6. references

References or Referees are people you include on your resume that will be able to speak about you. There are two types: character references and professional references.

Character Reference

A character reference is used when you do not have any professional experience (working in a job). Traditionally, you should include two character references that can speak to your abilities and who you are as a person. These should not be family members if you can avoid it. Ask one of your teachers, coaches, and so on. You should include their name, email, and phone number.

Make sure to ask your referee (the person you include as reference) for their permission to do this and notify them when you are applying for jobs.

Professional Reference

Professional references are those from people that you have worked with/for previously. Usually, this will be your supervisor or manager. As with character references, you’ll need to include contact details and name. Again, be sure to ask their permission to include this.

There are some more sections that you can include on your first job resume depending on your personal preferences. These sections are more about showing your personality and interest and aren’t needed exactly, but they can help you stand out from the crowd. If you have little experience, these optional sections are a great way to show off your talents.

Most proud of

Your Most Proud Of Section gives insight into who you are as a person. It can be used to highlight some of your projects and personal achievements. This will help the potential employer understand how you fit in the company’s culture and the team.

2. Certifications

Certifications show you’re willing to dedicate time to learning new skills. Being certified in First-Aid, Manual Lifting, Microsoft Excel and more are great to include on a CV as they show you’re proactive in your work.

3. Passions

Passions are a way to quickly emphasize things that matter most to you. These can be personal causes or more business-focused. Some examples of personal passions are:

  • Music Production
  • Fighting homelessness

Some examples of business-focused passions are:

  • Improving efficiency
  • Growth and improvement
  • Diversity & Inclusion
  • Collaboration

Awards are the pinnacle of measured achievement. Including awards shows the employer that external parties have recognized your ability and rewarded it in the past. If you’re still in high-school, high-school awards such as Student of The Year are appropriate. As you enter college, you should try to include awards and achievements from college instead.

For some industries, a photo is an excellent way of personalizing your resume and adding a human touch. However, in some countries, it’s forbidden or frowned upon to include a photograph. So, double-check. This can be as simple as emailing the HR department to ask or ask your guidance counselor for some help with this.

Enhancv How To Write Your First Job Resume First job resume

We have more resume examples for you to check out, specific to your job title.


After completing your resume, reviewing your content is the last step you should take before sending it out to recruiters.

1. Have you read the job description?

The job description is typically posted alongside any job listing. It will give details on what the job will entail and the duties you’ll be given. Reading the job description will help tailor your resume to answer the question the recruiter will ask.

For example, if the job description mentions accounting, you’ll know to include your math skills.

Not all parts of the job description need to be satisfied, however. Meet as many expectations as possible. If it mentions “experience with customers” this doesn’t have to be direct experience working in customer service. It can be selling hot dogs at your local football game.

2. How is your resume different?

Looking at your resume, you should spot things that make it unique. Remember, you need to stand out from the pool of people that are applying for the same job you are. Including personalized sections (Most Proud Of etc.,) tells your unique resume story and typically satisfies this idea.

3. Are your achievements measured?

Look over achievements to see if they are all measured. Again, listing responsibilities will only do so much. Providing a measure shows the recruiter what impact you have made in the past and gives insight into the potential impact you’ll have in the future.

4. Have you checked for typos?

Typos are very common in resumes. Everything else may be perfect, but if there’s a typographical error (spelling mistake, grammar mistakes, and so on) it will dampen the good impression you’re trying to leave on the recruiter. You can utilize Enhancv’s content analyzer to spot common typos.

5. Has a friend reviewed your resume?"?

Getting a fresh pair-of-eyes to look at your resume will do wonders. Not only will it give you an idea of how your resume comes across to a neutral party, but they may also find mistakes that you’ve missed. They may even think of some achievement you forgot to include. Luckily, Enhancv’s built-in referral link allows you to do this with ease.

1. How long should my first resume be?

For your first resume, you should aim to keep your resume between 1-2 pages (1 is preferable). Extremely long resumes are often filled with fluff and aren’t tailored to one particular job.

2. What font should I use?"?

Font restrictions are not very common, but check out the job description/application guidelines just in case. In general, use a readable font with clean edges. Arial, Times New Roman, Rubik, and so on.

3. How many resumes should I have?

A good rule-of-thumb is to have a resume for every sector or industry you’re applying to. For example, a sales resume and a volunteer resume . For jobs that you really care about, you might even tailor your resume to that specific company .

4. What needs to be on my first resume?

Essential sections include:

  • Contact Details (Phone Number & Email)
  • Previous experience (not necessarily in the working world)

Additional sections include:

  • Most Proud Of
  • Achievements
  • Personal Summary (important for your first resume)
  • Certifications

5. Where can I find first resume examples?"?

You can find real examples of people that have been successful with their resumes on Enhancv’s Resume Examples page.

Writing your first job resume

Writing your first job resume can be difficult, but it’s manageable. Once you overcome writer’s block and start to think about the things you have done in your life, it will come naturally. To create a first job resume that resembles our sample resume and that satisfies all of our tips, be sure to check out Enhancv’s resume builder.

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How to Write a CV for a 16-Year-Old [Template for First CV]

  • CV Examples

How to Write a CV for a 16-Year-Old [Template for First CV]

There’s a first time for everything. Getting your first job is one of the hardest. But we’ll make it easier with our complete guide to writing a CV for a 16-year-old.

Jacques Buffett, CPRW

You’re probably reading this because you’re 16 and looking for your first job. I’ve been there and I remember it well. It was confusing, unfamiliar and downright scary at times. I had no idea how to write a CV and even less idea how I could get any job with no experience.

The one thing I didn’t have was a clear and straightforward guide to writing a CV for a 16-year-old. But you’re in luck, because that’s exactly what I’ve created for you here. 

Read on and you’ll see a CV example for 16-year-olds you can adjust and make yours. Plus, you’ll learn an easy formula for writing a CV for jobs for 16-year-olds that will land you 10x more interviews than any other CV template for 16-year-olds out there.

Here’s a CV for a 16-year-old made with our builder.

Want to save time and have your CV ready in 5 minutes? Try our CV builder. It’s fast and easy to use. Plus, you’ll get ready-made content to add with one click. See 20+ CV templates and create your CV here .

sample resume example

Sample CV made with our builder— See more CV samples here .

Looking for more detailed advice and guides for specific jobs? Read more:

  • How to Write a CV [Professional UK Examples]
  • Shop Assistant CV Example
  • Hospitality CV Example
  • Barista CV Example
  • Retail CV Example

Sample CV for 16 Year Old Template

Oliver Stokes

Ph: 0777 777 7777

Email: [email protected]


Mature and hard-working first year A-level student seeks part-time employment in supermarket retail. Enthusiastic, with an appetite for hard work and a team player mindset gained through my passion for sporting pursuits. Looking to gain hands-on experience in a busy retail environment.

A-levels: Chemistry, Mandarin, Economics. September 2019–June 2021 (expected graduation date)

South Haringay Comprehensive, London, UK

9 GCSEs including Mathematics and English, September 2017–June 2019

  • Interpersonal communication
  • Time keeping skills
  • Attention to detail
  • Computer skills—G Suite and Python on Raspberry Pi

Hobbies and Interests

  • Cricket. Spin Bowler for NW London Amateurs U-16 team.
  • Running. Keen participant in various 5k and 10k events including acting as voluntary steward for Park Run.
  • Programming. Raspberry Pi aficionado with my favourite projects including a twitter bot and weather station.
  • Mandarin—Intermediate

Another thing I remember about writing my first CV is that I didn’t really know what a CV is. In fact, I didn’t even know what CV stood for. So here’s a quick explanation in case you have any doubts.

CV is short for curriculum vitae. Your CV contains information about your education, skills and experience that helps employers judge your suitability for a job.

So when you make a job application, you send off your CV, the employer reads it and uses the info you included to decide whether or not they want to interview you.

So that’s the boring part over, now for what you came for. 

Here’s how to write a CV for a 16-year-old:

1. Use the Best Format for Your CV for a 16-Year-Old

Interestingly, the number of 16-year-olds in employment today is around half of what it was 20 years ago . And it’s not all down to more people continuing full time education. Most of that fall comes from lower employment levels for 16-year-olds who are at school or college.

That Saturday job is much harder to get than it used to be, so your CV needs to be spot on. Here’s how to make a first impression that’ll get you off on the right foot.

  • Choose the best CV format . For a CV for a 16-year- old’s first job, use chronological format. It’s the most common format that every employer is familiar with and it’ll have no problems with the ATS software that scans your application.
  • Get your word processor settings right for your CV layout . Page margins should be one inch on each side, text should be left-aligned with no justification and there should be a double space between each CV section. This creates plenty of white space and makes your CV easy to read, helping employers find everything they need.
  • Choose a professional CV font . Calibri, Helvetica and Arial all look great. 
  • Keep your CV short. The best CV length is no more than two pages, and for a 16-year-old you’re best keeping it to one page.
  • Unless the job advert says otherwise, save your CV as a PDF to keep your formatting intact.
  • Don’t include your photo or any personal info like your date of birth. 

Pro Tip: Check your CV for mistakes after you write it. There’s actually lots of people who search ‘how to right a cv for a 16 year old’, and I’m sure you can see the problem there! Use a built-in spell checker, use a writing app like Grammarly and have someone else check your work. You’ll have the added bonus of instantly proving your writing proficiency, one of the top soft skills employers want.

2. Put Your Contact Details in Your CV Header

Your CV header is the very first lines of your CV that contains your contact info. Here’s what to include.

  • Your full name
  • Phone number
  • Email address. And make sure it's a professional looking one based on your name.

There’s no need to include your home address. It’s irrelevant and uses up page space you could use for more important information. 

Read more: What to Include in a CV: Essential CV Sections

3. Write a Personal Statement for a 16-Year-Old CV

Whether it’s your favourite film or a viral video on YouTube or TikTok, they all have one thing in common. An exciting introduction. This grabs the viewer’s attention and holds it, so they’ll keep watching. That’s exactly what your personal statement for a 16-year-old CV does. It acts as the attention-grabbing intro to the rest of your CV. 

3–4 sentences is all you’ve got to make the employer take notice. But don’t let that scare you, just use these three simple questions as your formula and you’ll make them hungry for more.

  • Who are you? 
  • What can you offer to the employer? 
  • What are your career goals? 

Answer these questions differently depending on whether you have any experience or not. If you’re like most 16-year-olds and you have no work experience, then do this.

  • Write a list of your skills, strengths and experience. Focus on your education and any extra-curricular activities you participate in, such as sports. Highlight anything that would help you do well on the job you’re applying for.
  • Now choose 3–4 items from your list that match up with what’s listed in the job advert. Then combine them with passion for the role, and knowledge about the employer to prove that you’ll be a good fit. 
  • This is called ‘tailoring’ your CV to the job, and it’s the best way of creating a CV that will get you interviewed.

If you’ve had some work experience already then do this.

  • Write a list of all your selling points as an employee. This includes all the experience, skills and abilities you have that make you a ‘must hire’ candidate.
  • Then re-read the job description in the advert, list the skills and experience it demands and match these up with 3–4 points from your own list.
  • Use these points to write a personal profile tailored to the job you’re targeting

Whether you’ve got experience or not, this section is easier to write if you leave it until last. It’s much faster when you’ve got everything else written and ready to refer to.

Check out this guide for even more tips on how to write your personal profile: How to Write a CV Personal Statement [20+ Examples]

When making a CV in our builder, drag & drop bullet points, skills, and auto-fill the boring stuff. Spell check? Check . Start building your CV here .

Create the perfect CV

When you’re done, Zety’s CV builder will score your CV and tell you exactly how to make it better.

4. Include an Education Section

Usually this section would come after your work experience. But on a CV template for a 16-year-old it’s best to put your education first. At this stage of your life it carries more weight than your work history, which is probably pretty thin. 

  • Include the name of the school you attend, its location, and the dates you attended as in the CV example at the start of this guide. Also include the date you expect to complete your education.
  • If you’re currently pursuing your A-levels, list individual subjects. 
  • For your GCSEs you only need to list Maths and English, many employers look for passes in these subjects as a minimum requirement. But—
  • If you completed a GCSE subject that’s directly related to the job you’re applying for, then do mention it. 

5. Complete Your Work Experience Section (If You Have Any)

If you have no experience whatsoever then you can just skip this section. However, it’s essential you include any experience you do have. Any sort of work experience at all is a huge plus for a CV for a 16-year-old. Here’s how to do it.

  • List your most recent job first and work back in time from there listing any previous jobs if you have any. That’s why this type of CV format is also called reverse chronological.
  • For each job, write your job title, the name of the employer, your dates of employment (use “present” as the end date if you’re still working there), then include up to six bullet points describing the job.
  • Start each bullet point with a CV action word like assisted, contributed or cooperated to give them added impact.
  • Try to include measurable achievements, not just your duties. Don’t just say what you did, prove how well you did it.
  • Always tailor your CV work experience section to the description in the job advert. Highlight what the employer is looking for and match your experience to what’s needed.
  • Use the CAR (Challenge Action Result) formula to structure your bullet points. 

Let me explain that last point in more detail. If you write your bullet points like this it gives them more impact. Take a look at this example.

  • Trained and guidednew staff members to ensure excellent customer service was delivered.

There’s a challenge, new staff members don’t know what they’re doing without guidance. There’s an action, training and guiding them. Then there’s a result, the new staff members gave excellent customer service.

Pro Tip: If you want to get some experience then be proactive. It doesn’t have to be paid work. There are plenty of ways too. Try volunteering for a local charity. Check if your school or college organises work experience placements or try the Prince’s Trust . Any experience you can get as a 16-year-old will look good on your CV.

Want even more good CV advice? Check out our guide: 20+ CV Tips and Advice for Job Application Success

6. Show Off Your CV for a 16-Year-Old Skills

When writing a CV for a 16-year-old you need to highlight your skills. And not just any skills. This is all about the skills you have that employers will want. Here’s what to do.

  • Refer to the job advert again, read the job description and list the skills that are mentioned.
  • Now write a list of your own skills, refer to your education and work experience sections for inspiration. But also include skills gained from other parts of your life experience too.
  • When you’re done you’ll need to list 5–10 skills on your CV. Include your skills that match those in the job description but don’t be afraid to also include skills that are important for every job, like interpersonal skills.
  • Aim for a mix of soft skills and hard skills . 

These skills would look great on a CV for a 16 year old.

Skills for a CV for a 16-Year-Old

  • Time management
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Written communication
  • Adaptability
  • IT skills (name the programs you’re familiar with)
  • Problem solving

Read More: Best List of Skills to Put on a CV [Top Skills & Examples]

7. Add Additional Sections to Your CV for a 16-Yer-Old

A CV for a 16-year-old can look pretty flimsy if you’re not careful and you risk looking the same as every other job seeker your age. With no career history it can be tough to stand out. But there’s an easy way of adding some weight to your CV and giving more insight into your unique abilities. Add some additional sections. Here’s how.

  • Mention language skills. Foreign language skills are needed across the workforce and are a great choice for your CV.
  • Include hobbies and interests on your CV. They’re a great way of making you more relatable to the recruiter, we like people who are like us . It can also demonstrate your abilities. E.g. playing a musical instrument shows you’re focused and dedicated.
  • You could also include projects, achievements, awards, and volunteering. Anything that’s relevant to the job and makes you stand out as a good candidate.

Read more: Best Hobbies and Interests to Put on a CV

8. Consider a Cover Letter

You’re right, almost nobody writes letters these days. But when it comes to applying for a job, writing a cover letter is still important. More than half of employers say they’re a must-have. Writing a professional cover letter to accompany your CV will make your job application stand out even more.

This is how to write a cover letter .

  • Use the right cover letter format .
  • Put a ‘hook’ in your cover letter opening . Show energy and passion, and include an impressive achievement that’ll make you stand out as a candidate.
  • Show how your skills and personal attributes will help you to excel in the job you’re applying for. Like your CV, tailor your cover letter to each new job you apply for.
  • Put a call to action in your cover letter ending asking to meet or schedule a phone call to discuss the job further.
  • Stick to the right cover letter length .

Read more: What to Include in a Cover Letter for a Job [15+ Examples]

Plus, a great cover letter that matches your CV will give you an advantage over other candidates. You can write it in our cover letter builder here.  Here's what it may look like:

matching set of cv and cover letter

See more cover letter templates and start writing.

And one last tip. Follow up your job application. If you don’t get a reply within a week, contact the employer by email or phone about the status of your application. It’s an easy way of improving your chances of getting an interview. In fact, 22% of hiring managers are less likely to hire a candidate who doesn’t follow up.

And that’s it. You’re all set to write a CV for a 16-year-old that’ll help you get your first job.

Thanks for reading. What else would you like to know about writing a first CV for a 16 year old? Are you writing a CV for a 16 year old still at school or have you left school already? Ask me anything at all about what to include in a CV for a 16 year old in the comments section and I’ll be happy to help.

About Zety’s Editorial Process

Our editorial team has thoroughly reviewed this article to ensure it follows Zety’s editorial guidelines . Our dedication lies in sharing our expertise and providing you with actionable career advice that offers you real value. Every year, the quality of our content attracts 40 million readers to our site. But that’s not all – we conduct original research to gain a detailed understanding of the labour market. We take pride in being cited by top universities and leading media outlets in the UK and worldwide .


Jacques Buffett, CPRW

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First job CV as a school leaver: Template CV and guide

So university wasn’t for you, and you’re looking for your first job as a school leaver. If you’ve decided to go straight from school or college into a job then it’s important to get your first job CV right.

 A young girl holding a laptop and books.

Writing your first CV effectively is crucial for securing that first job. There’s lots of advice and first CV examples out there that can help you, but you’ll want to ask yourself a few questions to make sure yours is as strong as possible. Don’t worry if you have a CV with no work experience – these questions are designed to help you fill out our free first cv template.

Free CV template with no work experience

In this article we’ll explain how to make a CV for a first job. To start, download the first CV template which is a good CV example for a first job.

Questions to help you fill your CV template for a first job

If you have no full time work experience you might be wondering how to write your first CV, and what you can even put on it.

Take a look at the student CV template for a first job that you downloaded. You’ll see there are sections that you can focus on that give you space to sell your skills and knowledge, regardless of any lack of full time working experience. These are the professional profile, objectives, education, further details sections – but you also have the work experience section if you have completed any kind of work experience in the past.

Using the above example of a CV with no work experience, ask yourself the following questions to help build your first job CV.

What are your exam results like, and is there any particular subject you excelled in?

It goes without saying that you will have spent the best part of the last few years concentrating on your exams, so you should rightly be proud of everything you’ve achieved.

As well as including a general round-up of how you did overall, you could use your first job CV as an opportunity to detail any subject which you have done particularly well in, or enjoyed the most. This is particularly relevant if applying for a job related to that subject.

Have you done any extracurricular or non-compulsory activities?

Taking part in any extra activities while at school is a great way to show a level of commitment that goes beyond your compulsory attendance at classes. Were you a regular at revision sessions? Did you take on extra assignments or projects? Did you read any extra books? If yes, you can include details of this on your first job CV . It shows motivation, dedication, and a willingness to go the extra mile to succeed, which could be vital for a student CV with no experience.

Were you a member of any clubs during your school time?

It’s not just exams and academic achievements which help when looking for employment. Your activities outside of the school curriculum show that you’re a well-rounded individual. They can also show crucial job-skills, such as teamwork, commitment and problem solving.

Perhaps you were part of a  sports team , took part in amateur dramatics, or did some volunteering in the community – it all helps to show off the variety of skills you have to offer. If you’re using our first job CV example, make sure to incorporate this information.

Did you have any special responsibilities at school?

If you took on extra responsibilities at school, that shows an employer that you’re committed, trustworthy and not afraid to work hard. It’s worth mentioning if you had any extra duties when at school. Perhaps you were a prefect, mentored younger students, helped out at lunchtime, ran the school shop, or helped to coordinate assemblies, study groups or clubs.

Try to include details about why you were chosen for these roles, or why you chose to volunteer for them in the first place, and what you learned from your experiences. For instance, if you helped to run the school shop it’s likely that you learned about handling cash – pretty handy for jobs which require you to work with money.  Including this sort of information would be a good example of a CV for a first job with no experience.

What were your hobbies while you were at school?

Much like extracurricular activities, your hobbies help to show what kind of person you are and if you have any extra transferable skills. Try to steer clear of things like watching television or playing computer games, as these can look a little unimaginative. Do include things such as cooking, photography, travel, sports and writing.

What was your attendance and punctuality like at school?

Employers naturally want to work with people who are going to turn up on time and regularly. Your school will have a record of what your attendance figures were like, so including this information on your CV is a good idea, especially if it was particularly impressive – such as a 100% (or close to) attendance record. This kind of information can strengthen a CV for someone with no work experience.

Did you win any awards or special achievement prizes?

Recognised achievements can improve any CV, and that certainly goes for CVs for first time jobs. Lots of schools give out prizes for a variety of different achievements, such as excelling in a particular subject, extracurricular activities, high attendance rates and so on. Include information about any such awards on your first job resume, detailing what you won it for, how many times you won it (if applicable), and the work you had to do to win it.

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Resume Templates: First

Looking for a template that grabs a recruiter’s attention? Look no further than our customizable resume templates. Just fill in your information and download!

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When you’re just starting out in the professional world, it can be a challenge to figure out how to market yourself to employers. However, a strong and convincing document highlights the benefits and passion you can bring to the company. You can modify the traditional professional summary, skills, and work experience sections to leverage your academic experience and highlight transferrable skills. Use the first resume template below as the perfect starting point for your own customized document.

Tips for Personalizing Your First Resume Template

The central focus of your resume should be the benefits and value you can bring to the company as an employee. This is especially important if you’re just starting your career and don’t have a lot of previous job history to showcase. Use the tips below to learn exactly how to customize the first resume template to make a strong impression on any hiring manager.

  • Create a professional summary to market yourself to the recruiter. This is your chance to highlight your most relevant academic achievements and transferrable skills in a way that parallels the requirements in the job description.
  • Make the objective statement work for you. An objective statement isn’t necessary for candidates with a long career history but can be very useful when applying for an entry-level job. Use the first sentence of your professional summary to discuss why you want a job in this industry and how your education has prepared you for success.
  • Make sure your document passes an automated review system. Include keywords, phrases, and terms directly from the job description.
  • Use the Highlights/Skills section to show off your accomplishments. You want to show exactly how your actions created beneficial outcomes. Even if you are discussing a school project rather than a job experience, quantify your results in terms of time, money, or measurable amounts.
  • Don’t skimp on your work experience details. You may not have a lot of entries for this section, but remember to include volunteer work, leadership roles in academic clubs, senior projects, and internships.
  • Keep your education details concise and relevant. Highlight legitimate information, such as magna cum laude graduation, don’t include excessive details such as GPA and course lists, as it can distract from the rest of your resume.
  • Create a common theme to build your personal brand. Make sure your entire document portrays the professional image you want: a well-educated, enthusiastic candidate ready to make significant contributions to the company.

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CV Templates & examples

Writing the perfect CV can be tough, so our experts have created a job-winning range of free CV templates for you to use.

Are you looking for a new job? If so, the first important step on your job search is creating a great CV.

The problem is, starting from scratch can be frustrating and time-consuming. Even if you've got an existing CV, you could still be making a number of common mistakes.

To help make your job search that little bit easier, we've created a range of CV examples and templates for you to use.

first job cv template

Our free CV templates cater for everyone, no matter what stage you're at in your career.

From school leaver templates and recent graduates ones, to academics and executive-level CV examples, our templates can help to increase your chances of job hunting success.

We have also covered every scenario, from intentional career breaks to dismissal or redundancy .

So, if you're looking for a free CV template to assist you on your job search, look no further. You can check out the full range below, including some of our top tips on making the most of our templates and how to write a good CV.

CV Templates

first job cv template

General CV template

Do you need to create a clear and concise CV that grabs the recruiter's attention? Our free CV template can be easily tailored to any job application.

first job cv template

First job CV template

Looking for your first job is an exciting time in your career, but you need a strong CV to help get you started. Our first CV template shows you everything you need to include.

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Career change CV template

Are you thinking about a career change? Find out how to make the most of your transferable skills using our career change CV template.

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Graduate CV template

Congratulations, you've graduated! It's time to get out there and find your dream job, and our graduate CV template can help you do just that.

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Graduate with no experience CV template

Have you recently graduated but have no experience to shout about? No problem! Our CV template can help you showcase your new qualifications and impress recruiters.

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School leaver CV template

Looking for your first job after leaving school can be nerve-wracking, but you can boost your chances of finding a role with our school leaver CV template.

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Part-time CV template

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Career gap CV template

Are you looking for a new job after some time out? Explaining a career gap on your CV doesn't have to be complicated; use our career gap CV template to guide you.

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Unemployed CV template

Being unemployed doesn't mean you're unemployable. Using our CV template, you can effectively market yourself and your skills to boost your chances of securing an interview.

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Combination CV template

Your CV doesn't have to be either-or. Our combination CV template will help you showcase all of your key skills, experience and achievements perfectly.

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IT/Technical CV template

Are you looking for your next exciting IT role? Our IT/Technical CV template will increase your chances of being invited in for an interview.

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Teacher CV template

Are you unsure how to present your teaching CV? Our template can help you to create an interview-winning teaching application.

Free CV Builder

Build, customise, preview and download your own CV on the go and start applying to jobs in minutes.

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Using our CV templates

In order to make the most of our free CV templates, you need to choose the one that's right for you. Once you've done this, you can begin to gather the relevant information and organise your thoughts ready to get writing

first job cv template

Treat our CV templates as a guide

Any CV template you use should be treated as a structural guide. This is not a script, and therefore, you need to personalise each section to reflect your own experiences.

Even as you use the templates to craft your CV, remember, every application needs to be tailored to the specific role and company you're applying for. So don't just use these templates to create a generic CV that you can fire off to multiple vacancies.

Recruiters can spot a generic CV from a mile away.

first job cv template

Adjust the length accordingly

Although many of the templates are set at a standard of two A4 pages long, if you think that one page is enough, don't be afraid to cut this down.

It's much better to keep your CV short and sweet than to waffle on with irrelevant information.

first job cv template

Stick to the CV structure

Our templates offer the best possible structure for your current situation or status. For example, if you're applying for a highly skilled position, you want a CV structure that prioritises your key skills. So be sure to stick to the given structure as this has been carefully thought out by our CV experts.

Within the templates, you'll also find advice on how to personalise each section and perfect your CV.

However, if you're still feeling unsure about getting started, you can check out our CV writing tips below.

How to write a good CV

Every CV is different. These depend on your individual experience, qualifications, skills, achievements, etc. But the good news is there are some simple rules you can follow to make writing a strong CV much easier.

Choose the right CV template and structure

As you can see from our selection above, there are lots of different types of CVs out there. Therefore, you need to make sure you choose the template that most accurately reflects where you are in your career.

This will give you the best structure for your CV. For example, if you're a recent graduate with no experience, you're going to want to make your degree the focal point. Therefore, you want a structure that supports this.

So take your time and carefully look through our CV templates above to determine which is right for you.

Understand what to include (and what to leave out)

Although the contents will differ, your CV should certainly include:

But remember, space is precious, and within each of these sections, you should only include information that supports and boosts your application.

In terms of things that you don't need to include on your CV, you should be careful to leave out pictures and irrelevant details that don't impact your ability to do the job, such as gender, religion and marital status.

Think carefully about the format

Luckily, most CV templates will show you how to format your CV. However, if you're confused, or you're starting from scratch, it's important to know how to present your information.

You need to choose an easy to read, professional font - and don't make this too big or small. Times New Roman, size 12 is always a safe bet.

It's also a good idea to use headings, sub-headings and bullet points to help break the information up. After all, you want to make it as easy as possible for the recruiter to find what they're looking for.

Keep your CV short and sweet

In most cases, your CV should be one or two A4 pages long. The only exception to this might be an academic CV, but for the most part, you want to keep it as short and sweet as possible.

Proofread, read and read again

If you've gone through the hard work of writing and fine-tuning your CV, you don't want to fall at the final hurdle.

Spelling and grammatical errors look sloppy and unprofessional. As such, you need to make sure you proofread your CV multiple times before submitting your application.

It's also a good idea to use an online writing assistant tool or have someone else check it over for you. This will ensure you haven't missed any silly mistakes.

Make the most of CV examples and how-to guides

Finally, if you're feeling unsure or nervous about writing your CV, don't let this overwhelm you. Nowadays, there are plenty of resources out there to help you craft the perfect job application.

Looking at CV examples, as well as how-to guides like those from CV-Library, can help to boost your writing skills and build your confidence.

In fact, you can check out our comprehensive CV writing guide here .

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   Home » Articles & News » How To Write Your First CV – Step by Step Guide for Students

How To Write Your First CV – Step by Step Guide for Students

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  • CV tips and cover letter tips
  • Help Getting A Job
  • Not sure what to do next – study

See how to write your first CV for your first job with this step by step guide for students. You don’t lots of need work experience or qualifications to write a great CV that demonstrates your skills and strengths.

In this guide:, what is a cv.

  • What to put in your CV
  • Your personal statement
  • Your work experience
  • Your skills and strengths
  • Your interests
  • Your references
  • Do’s and Don’ts
  • Why you need a CV
  • Expert tips
  • Watch the video!

A CV (also known as Curriculum Vitae) is a document that helps you show employers your skills, strengths, qualifications and experience when you apply for a job. Employers often ask for a CV and expect it to look and feel professional.

A CV is a big first step to getting a job. It doesn’t just show employers what you’ve done – it shows them what you can do. Think of it as an introduction to one of the most amazing and employable people in the world. You.

What to put in your first CV: A step by step guide

  • Contact details – phone number and email address.
  • Personal statement: – A personal statement is a sentence or paragraph that summarises your strengths, career goals, and what you can offer employers.
  • Key skills: – Skills like teamwork, communication and problem solving are useful to put on your CV when you are still building experience
  • Education: Putting your education in your CV means adding you’ve studied, for how long, and what grades you got. You can put predicted grades if waiting for results.
  • Work experience: Work experience can include part-time jobs, work placements, work shadowing, internships, and paid training like apprenticeships.
  • Hobbies and interests: This section is your chance to show your general life experience and skills. Volunteering, personal projects and learning out of choice (e.g. sports or music) can show employers your skills, motivation and suitability for a role.

You can explore each of these elements in more depth below.

What to put in your personal statement on your first CV

What is a cv personal statement.

A CV personal statement is a bite-sized sentence or two summing up who you are as a professional, and what you want to offer employers in terms of your ambition and experience.

Example personal statement

“Sixth form student at Stonebridge College. Practical work experience with retail weekend work (including cash handling) and summer catering work in restaurants. Looking to start a business career with work that develops my business skills and includes customer service.”

If you haven’t done much work experience, you won’t have much to say here. You can still talk about your skills, though. You’ll learn more about talking about skills in your first CV below.

What counts as work experience on your first CV?

You may have never had a job before, but you probably have more experience than you think. Examples of work experience include:

  • work shadowing
  • work experience and placements
  • volunteering
  • charity work
  • Saturday jobs
  • summer jobs .

Work experience can take all kinds of forms. For each bit of work experience , include the name of the place you worked, how long you worked there and what your main tasks were. Try to write about the work you did in a way that shows future employers what you’d be good at. For example…

How to talk about skills and strengths in your first CV

If you’ve got little or no work experience, you can still use a CV to talk about your skills and strengths. These are known as ‘soft skills’ or ‘life skills’. They are personal qualities that have helped you develop as a person, but can also help you fit into the workplace and develop as a professional, too.

Many youth friendly employers are changing their recruitment approach in terms of job descriptions and job requirements to focus on skills and strengths instead of qualifications and experience. This can help you demonstrate your suitability for a job in your CV when you are a student or school leaver and still building your qualifications and experience.

These are the top life and work skills to talk about in your CV:

  • self-belief
  • communication
  • problem solving
  • self-management .

Try out our free online Young Professional training to build these five top life and work skills, wherever you are in the UK.

You are building these important work skills all the time, even when you are still at school. You just need to learn how to develop them and show employers you’ve got them. You can talk about these work skills in your CV.

If you are applying for a job that mentions nice-to-have skills, use your CV to demonstrate how any work experience you’ve done has helped you build up those skills.

EXAMPLE: talking about your Saturday job in your CV

Role: Weekend customer assistant work, MacDougal’s Fast Food, Aug 2016-Dec 2017

  • Developed strong customer service skills in serving customers quickly and politely
  • Used problem solving to help customers with a range of queries like requesting vegan choices or items not on the menu
  • Worked as a team to make sure food was cooked, served and delivered quickly, and the service area was kept clean
  • Used self-management and organisation skills to carry out tasks on my own without constant supervision by the team leader
  • Developed time-keeping skills in always being punctual for work
  • I was given extra responsibilities by the team leader and trained in cash handling and working the till.

How to talk about hobbies in your CV

Talking about hobbies and interests in your CV gives you the opportunity to demonstrate your ambition, motivation, positive attitude and life skills. It’s important to talk about your interests in your first CV because it shows employers you are keen to learn and try new things. You are motivated to do more than the bare minimum in order to develop yourself.

Example hobbies and interests to include in your first CV:

  • Volunteering (this includes volunteering online )
  • Social action
  • Learning a new skill, also known as lifelong learning (e.g. sports discipline, instrument, crafting, coding)
  • Clubs and societies (e.g. scouts, guides, after-school clubs, youth clubs)
  • Achievements (e.g. awards you have won, charity events you have participated in, courses you have completed)

Employers are likely to ask you about your hobbies and interests in a job interview. Talking about these can make you feel more at ease with the social side of the interview process. You can also talk about the skills you use in your hobbies to show you are a well-rounded person who is suitable for the job.

Who can give you a reference for your first CV?

Someone who gives you a reference is someone who can vouch for you when you are applying for a job. You don’t have to put references on your CV. You can just say “References available on request” on the bottom. But this does give you time to think about who could be a good reference for any work experience you’ve done.

If you’re still in school, you could ask a teacher to be a reference. If you’ve done any saturday work, volunteering or charity work you could ask the team leader or the person who supervised you to be your reference. If you’ve done school work experience, you could ask your supervisor to provide you with a reference.

Whoever you ask for a reference, be polite and explain why you want the job – or ask if they will be willing to provide a reference if you apply for jobs in the future.

What not to put on your CV:

  • Date of birth
  • Gender (your business, no-one else’s)
  • Religion (your business, no-one else’s)
  • Relationship status (single, married or “it’s complicated”? Never put it on your CV!)
  • Nationality (all these things are way too personal and employers will only ask if they absolutely need to know)
  • Weird colours, designs and fonts (keep it simple!)
  • A non-professional email address (Weird or joke emails like [email protected] give employers the wrong impression. It’s quick and free to get a new professional email address like [email protected] if you need one.)
  • Lies (never lie on your CV. You can emphasise your good points, but never lie – you will just get caught out.)
  • References (if employers want references from people, they’ll ask you. Save that CV space for your skills, experience and achievements)
  • It is recommended that you do not provide your address for personal security reasons, but it you can decide whether you think it is necessary to include it.

What should your first CV look like?

The most important thing is to keep it simple! Your CV should not be more than two pages long, and it should look really basic with simple formatting. Avoid fancy fonts, CV templates or colours.

Search online for ‘CV templates’ and you’ll find loads of examples to try.

Why do you need a CV?

A CV tells employers what you’re good at, what you are interested in and what you’ve achieved in life so far.  You hand it out when you are looking for jobs. They are great to take to careers fairs , and you can often upload your CV if you are applying for a job online. If an employer likes your CV they might ask you to come to a job interview .

Your CV is your chance to show employers you’re a good match for the job and can back up any claims you make. If you say in your cover letter that your cooking could put the Great British Bake-Off to shame, your CV can back you up by showing how you raised hundreds of pounds in a school charity bake sale.

CV tips from youth-friendly employers

BT Early Careers : (Because not all employers these days need CVs, especially with online applications): “Fill in our online application form. We’ll be looking for evidence that you’re suitable for life at BT. Don’t worry if you don’t have a CV, you don’t need to upload one if you don’t want to.”

Capita : “Put your mobile phone number on your CV. We need to quickly find it and call you to give you the good news that you are through!”

Ixion: “Do you want to apply for a traineeship with us? As part of your traineeship, we will support you in putting together your CV as we want to see you progress successfully from your traineeship either into an apprenticeship or employment.”

Kelly Services : “In online recruitment, many companies use ATS, or Applicant Tracking Software, to sort out ‘good’ CVs from the ones that they think are less suited to the job. Use keywords in what you write on your online application that are relevant to the job posting that you’re applying for and that are mentioned in the job posting.”

McDonald’s : “Remember what your CV is for. It’s not just to show employers what you’ve done. It’s to show employers who you are and what you CAN do.”

VHR Technical Recruitment : “ List your most significant accomplishments in order of importance for each of your previous work experience roles. Allow employers and recruiters looking at your CV to build a great impression of your achievements and future potential in seconds. “

CV Tips: Watch Video

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