In today’s job market, it can sometimes feel like employers are looking to employ a very specific type of person — they want ambitious, smart, qualified, and experienced applicants. Having the right work experience is probably the most difficult of these criteria to meet. So, what if you are lacking in this area? Should you just give up and stay stuck where you are now? Absolutely not!

We’ve highlighted a few ways in which you can start your career even if you don’t have the right experience:

Be willing to start from the bottom

If an employer thinks you would be a good fit for the company, he or she might be willing to hire you in a junior position, even if you don’t have the exact experience they are looking for. Employers are also likely to consider you for a position if you lack relevant experience, but make up for it with your skills, enthusiasm, and ability to contribute to the company.

Also read: Increase Your Employability with these 4 Skills

Write an ambitious cover letter

Your cover letter is the first thing your potential employer will read — so don’t let the opportunity to create a good first impression slip by. Highlight your unique skills, motivate why you would be the perfect candidate for the position that you are applying for, and show them why you’d be a good fit for the company.

How to Start Your Career without the Right Work Experience

Compose a skills-based CV

Don’t worry about not being able to include any work-related experience — rather focus on what you have to offer. Take each of your skills and explain how each would benefit you (and the employer) in the position you’re applying for.

Also remember to include any relevant experience that you may have gained as a volunteer, or as a member of a student organisation. This type of experience is particularly valuable if you don’t yet have any formal work experience.

Looking for more tips on how to write a CV? Have a look at the links below:

Try a different approach to applying for the job

If you’re scared that your CV just won’t be enough to impress a future employer, why not pay them a personal visit? Call ahead to schedule an appointment — and once you get there, use the opportunity to bowl them over with your personality and a good motivation for why you’re the perfect candidate for the job.

Have any job-seeking tips of your own that you’d like to share with us? Let us know in the comments box below!

Note: This article was originally published on 26 October 2015, and has been updated for comprehensiveness.