CV for Work Experience Placements: How to Write & Example

Getting onto the career ladder is tough. Work experience placements are an ideal way to get started but competition is fierce. Just like a paid job you have to beat all the other candidates vying for the same position.

 

And just like a paid job you’ll need a CV to convince the employer that you’re the number one choice. In this article, you’ll learn how to write a CV for work experience that recruiters will love. You’ll also see work placement CV examples to show you exactly how it should look. 

 

Let’s make a start and get you the work experience you deserve.

 

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Sample CV for work experience

 

Brian Johnson

Ph: 0777 777 7777

Email: bjohnson_lc@gmail.com

 

Energetic A level student seeking fashion retail work experience. Passionate follower of fashion trends with a particular interest in innovative local designers. Seeking to gain hands-on experience in customer service at Firestarter’s highly acclaimed Brixton boutique. 

 

Education

 

A-levels: English Language, Art & Design, Digital Media. September 2019–June 2021 (expected graduation date)

Stockwell Academy, London

 

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

The Westbridge School, London

 

Work Experience

 

Volunteer Retail Assistant

Retromax Charity Boutique, Clapham, London

January 2020–Present

  • Served customers in a busy high street charity boutique with a footfall averaging 100 clients per day.
  • Learned the basics of visual merchandising, helping to create attractive window displays that enticed customers in a competitive retail district.
  • Accurately operated POS equipment, taking cash and card payments and processing online orders, achieving 100% accuracy with till reconciliations.
  • Photographed and uploaded images of high-end items to company Instagram account, contributing to a 50% increase in social media engagement.

 

Skills

 

  • Teamwork
  • Operating POS equipment
  • Photography and image editing
  • Customer service
  • Interpersonal skills

 

Hobbies and Interests

 

  • Social media. Managing personal Twitter and Instagram accounts that focus on new releases from local London fashion designers.

 

Now you know exactly what to include in a CV for work experience placements. Now for a step-by-step work experience template so you can write your own.

 

Here’s how to write a CV for work experience:

 

1. Start with a CV header

 

Your CV header is the very first part of your CV. Sitting right at the top of the page it includes your name and personal details. Here’s how to get it right.

 

Write your full name, and to make it stand out you can make the font size 6–8 pts bigger than the text in the body of your CV. Include your phone number and your email address, making sure it’s a sensible one based on your name. 

 

And, don’t include a photo, your date of birth, or any other personal information. These create all sorts of potential problems with discrimination, and they’re considered unacceptable in a standard UK curriculum vitae.

 

Header in a CV for work placement

 

Brian Johnson

Ph: 0777 777 7777

Email: bjohnson_lc@gmail.com

 

A strong CV summary will convince the recruiter you’re the perfect candidate. Save time and choose a ready-made personal statement written by career experts and adjust it to your needs in the LiveCareer CV builder.

 

Create your CV nowcv builder

 

2. Write a personal statement for your CV for work experience

 

Your personal statement is also known as a CV summary. It’s the opening act for your CV for work experience and it should be a compelling introduction to you as a candidate. Here’s how to catch the hiring manager’s eye and make them hungry for more.

 

It’s simple. All you have to do is answer these simple questions:

 

  1. Who are you? 
  2. What can you offer to the employer? 
  3. What are your career goals? 

 

Answer them like this. Mention some of the skills, abilities and interests you have that will help you to excel in this work experience placement. Make sure you’re being specific to the opportunity you’re applying for and don’t forget to consider any relevant experience from your education too.

 

The best way to do it is to refer to the job description for the placement and highlight all the factors it says are desirable. Hiring managers often use it as a way of describing their perfect candidate. Then consider 3–4 of your own qualities and skills that match up with the job description.

 

Make sure you show energy and enthusiasm too. Showing a keen interest in the employer is a sure way to catch their attention. 

 

CV for work experience—personal statement example

 

Energetic A level student seeking fashion retail work experience. Passionate follower of fashion trends with a particular interest in innovative local designers. Seeking to gain hands-on experience in customer service at Firestarter’s highly acclaimed Brixton boutique. 

 

3. Add an education section in your CV for work experience

 

When you’re writing a CV for work experience chances are you don’t have much, if any, work history to include. Therefore, your education should take precedence. More experienced candidates would put their work experience section after their CV summary, but for a CV for work experience your CV education section should go first. Here’s what to include.

 

If you’re a school-leaver include the name of the school or college you attended, and your dates of study. Include an expected graduation date if you’re still studying. For A-levels, mention each subject you studied, or are studying. But for GCSE’s you only need mention Maths and English specifically, that’s because achieving a pass in them is considered a bare minimum achievement by many employers.

 

If you’re a university graduate or still studying then include the name of the university, the degree and your dates of study. Again, using an expected graduation date if you’re still studying.

 

Education in a CV for work placement

 

A-levels: English Language, Art & Design, Digital Media. September 2019–June 2021 (expected graduation date)

Stockwell Academy, London

 

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

The Westbridge School, London

 

You don’t have to be a CV writing expert. In the LiveCareer CV builder you’ll find ready-made content for every industry and position, which you can then add with a single click.

 

Create your CV nowcv builder

 

4. Include your work history if you have any

 

If you do have any prior experience it’s essential you include it on your CV for work experience. Many candidates have none at all, so it’s a great way of making yourself stand out. Even volunteer experience is perfect, as long as it involves practical experience in a workplace, it’s worth including. Here’s how to do it perfectly.

 

Include your job title, the name of your employer and the dates you worked there (use ‘Present’ as the end date if you’re still working there). Then write up to six bullet points describing the job. 

 

Start each bullet point with a CV action verb to give it maximum impact. Then use accomplishment statements to add structure. It’s all about measurable achievements over duties. Don’t just say what you did, prove how well you did it.

 

Job Description for Work Placement CV

 

Volunteer Retail Assistant

Retromax Charity Boutique, Clapham, London

January 2020–Present

  • Served customers in a busy high street charity boutique with a footfall averaging 100 clients per day.
  • Learned the basics of visual merchandising, helping to create attractive window displays that enticed customers in a competitive retail district.
  • Accurately operated POS equipment, taking cash and card payments and processing online orders, achieving 100% accuracy with till reconciliations.
  • Photographed and uploaded images of high-end items to company Instagram account, contributing to a 50% increase in social media engagement.

 

5. Demonstrate your skills in your CV for work experience

 

In your CV skills section, aim for a mix of abilities. And remember, some skills are important for almost every job. In the case of soft skills, communication skills are king. In the case of hard skills, computer and IT skills are incredibly important. And again, make sure you target your skills to the work placement opportunity you’re applying for.

 

A bullet point list of 5 skills is ideal for a CV for work experience, and optionally you could add a brief sentence to each explaining how you demonstrate it. E.g. Image editing—advanced user of Adobe Photoshop.

 

Top skills for a CV for work experience

 

  • Communication skills
  • Interpersonal skills
  • IT skills
  • Teamwork
  • Self-motivation
  • Professionalism
  • Integrity
  • Time management
  • Self-discipline
  • Self-improvement

 

6. Put additional sections in your CV for work experience

 

Without a career history, it can be hard to make yourself stand out from all the other candidates. But including additional sections shows you’ve got the optional extras that make you the best choice for the job. Languages, hobbies and interests, projects and awards all make great additions to your CV for work experience. 

 

Other sections in a CV for work experience

 

Hobbies and Interests

 

  • Social media. Managing personal Twitter and Instagram accounts that focus on new releases from local London fashion designers.

 

7. Attach a cover letter for work experience

 

For the finishing touch add a cover letter. It’ll make your CV for work experience look even more professional and it’ll certainly impress the hiring manager. Start by using the right cover letter format. Then include a ‘hook’ in your cover letter opening, an impressive achievement to catch the recruiter’s eye. 

 

Next, when writing your cover letter show how your skills and experience will help you shine in the work placement role you’re applying for. Then include a call to action in your cover letter closing, asking to meet with the employer or set up a phone call to discuss the role further.

 

And for an extra professional touch, use a matching CV cover letter template.

 

8. What else to remember about writing a CV for work experience?

 

Stick to the following rules for your CV layout. It’s a professional business document and the CV format should reflect that.

  • Use clear headings in bold text to make each CV section stand out.
  • Choose a good CV font and make sure there is plenty of white space on the page.
  • Set your line spacing to single or 1.15, double space between sections, and have page margins of one inch on each side.
  • And unless the job advert says otherwise, send your CV as a PDF.

 

And we’re done, now you know how to write a CV for work experience that’ll give you the pick of the best placements.

 

A cover letter alone simply won’t be enough—you need an impactful CV, too. Create your CV in minutes. Just follow our wizard and fill in every CV section with ready-made content. Get started by choosing a professional CV template.

 

cv builder

 

The LiveCareer online CV maker lets you build a professional CV fast and download it as a PDF or DOC.

 

Create your CV now

 

Thanks for reading. Writing a CV is tough for everyone, but it’s even more difficult when you’re just starting out. So if you’ve got any questions at all please ask away in the comments section, and we’ll be happy to help.

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LiveCareer Editorial Team
LiveCareer Editorial Team

About the author

Since 2005, the LiveCareer Team has been helping job seekers advance their careers. In our in-depth guides, we share insider tips and the most effective CV and cover letter writing techniques so that you can beat recruiters in the hiring game and land your next job fast. Also, make sure to check out our state-of-the-art CV and cover letter builder—professional, intuitive, and fully in line with modern HR standards. Trusted by 10 million users worldwide.

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