If you are just starting out, it is logical that you have no experience. Does that mean it’s impossible to get a job?
No, companies do hire people with no experience.
Who do they hire?
They hire the juniors they think can add value. It doesn't matter if it's a disproportionate value or if it's small. The important thing is that this person can add value in some way.
What does add value mean?
It means solving problems. So, to add value, you first have to understand what the problem to be solved is.
You may not have experience in that particular job you want to apply for, but you do have life experience, in college, playing on a soccer team or leading it, for example.
Think about the problems you encountered and solved in different situations, and how you did it. At some point in your life you may have encountered and solved a problem, whatever it was. So, you have experience understanding a problem and solving it.
I'll give you an example of a time when I added value to the company I was working for.
I was an intern in a company and they sent me to look for a worker’s file. I had heard that they had to see if that person,an operator, had sanctions for not following safety practices in the plant. They wanted to see if he had to be suspended or warned.
They sent me to get the file, nothing more than that. We were on the 8th floor and the file was on the 2nd floor. I went there, looked for it, and while I was in the elevator, I opened the file to see if the person had had previous warnings. I got to the HR manager's office and I told her "here is the file. He had two previous warnings". She looked at me and said "That's good".
I added value because she no longer had to open the file to find that information that I had already found. Was that part of my job? No, but I understood what the problem to solve was and I solved it. I added value.
What can you do?
Find out about the company you want to work for. It doesn't matter if it's Tesla, SpaceX, or the company around the corner. Find out as much as you can, ask someone what they do, what problems they are trying to solve. That way, you'll have a better idea of how you can add value to them.
Are you “lost” if you don't know what the problem is?
No. There are other things you can offer.
Always remember this:
It is not enough to say what you know. What is useful is that you explain how you are going to use what you know to help the company.
For example, "I know how to use Power BI" does not mean anything to the company.
Explain how you can help the company using Power BI. "I know how to use SQL." Same thing: it has no value for the company. Explain how you can add value with SQL,
i.e., what you can do with SQL that helps the business.
Explain what you can do concretely, don't leave anything to the interpretation of the person interviewing you or reading your CV. Show real examples of what you can do.
After all, what makes you a good professional is not the software you know how to use, but how you use it to solve problems.
How do you show that you can add value before you get hired?
By showing what you are capable of doing.
If you went to university, you probably did some projects. Think of one you are proud of and explain what it was about,
how you interpreted the assignment, how you understood the problem, how you found the solution, and what tools you used.
You can also create your own project.
A junior or intern who knows how to use Excel from top to bottom adds value to the company, because they can easily start organizing a lot of information.
To demonstrate how well you use Excel and that you know how to use it to add value to the company, one idea is to create your own database, just to show your skills. For example, to find out what happened in New Zealand in terms of immigration in the last 10 years, you can go to the New Zealand Statistics website to collect information and build your database. In fact, you can even make a report.
Excel is something you can learn at home and present in a portfolio.
Be creative; look for ways to demonstrate how you will use what you know to help the company. The more concrete, the better.
So, you have no experience and nobody wants to hire you?
Maybe you are focusing on communicating what you know, and not on how you are going to use what you know to add value to the company.
Remember: what companies want to know is how you are going to help them.
Always ask yourself: what problems do they have to solve? How can I solve them using my knowledge?
Talking about your knowledge is not enough. You have to provide solutions, add value.
Now you know what to do if you have no experience and nobody wants to hire you.
Talk to one of our connectors about what you are looking for.
They are there to help you!