There are plenty of things you can be doing to build experience.

Types of Experiences Employers Find Valuable

If you are entering the job market fresh out of college, you need to take the initiative to achieve some working experience. There are plenty of things you can be doing to build experience. To impress at best the employer, make sure you demonstrate that initiative, skills, and the leadership qualities are the values you bring to the team.

Here are some valuable experiences that recruiters are looking for to their new employees.


Here are some valuable experiences that recruiters are looking for to their new employees.


If you just dropped out of the college, an internship is the best way to get-the-job experience before actually getting your first job itself.
Internships provide you with the opportunity to get inside the proper working environment. You get your hands in the actual work, meaning that you’re expected to apply your skills and knowledge on the job. Also, as you’re going to be part of a team, internships will accustom you to developing collaborative and communication skills. 

An internship gives you a bundle of benefits that can help you stand out from the crowd: exposure to the behaviors of professional practice, amplified self-awareness, the opportunity to exercise civic responsibility, growth of social and professional networks, and resume building.
From an employer’s perspective, internships also demonstrate that you have taken the initiative to build experience, develop your skills and knowledge, and to find out more about the working world. And if you do all of this before you graduate, that’s even better.

Get Certified

Certification is there to display two main things. First, it shows that you have mastered your basic skills and knowledge, meaning that are able to perform responsible roles and specific tasks. The second thing is that getting certified demonstrates that you’re willing to get your foot in the door and develop yourself following through the real challenges and new experiences to come. 

For example, Cisco offers a variety of globally recognized certification options, from CCNA to CCIE and beyond. Each certification pathway opens up many career options.


There are so many opportunities for you to get out there and showcase your skills. Starting a volunteering job will help you to measure and understand better of your technical skills. Also, it gives you the opportunity to take some time and evaluate the focus of your future job position.

Volunteering will show you whether you are ready to work with others to get things done, or you need more time working with your soft skills. Also, it is an opportunity to build up some valuable project management skills – the kinds of skills and experience very much in demand by employers.

Whatever kind of volunteering project interests you, you should also see it as an opportunity to get to grips with things like budgeting, equipment and resource allocation, people management, and approvals processes. Also, it is important that you document all the details of your volunteer project, so you can reference it and use it as part of your discussion with future employers further down the line.


Mentoring has two directions:

1. The first implies that you can locate a mentor – someone who is ahead of you, maybe, from whom you can learn and whose counsel you can take.
2. And, you can also be a mentor to someone who is further along in their studies than you are.
You might be wondering how that impresses potential employers.

For starters, it demonstrates that you have leadership abilities, confidence, and initiative.
And, whether you are the mentor or the person being mentored, there is a clear eagerness to learn, share, and trade that will benefit whoever employs you later on.

Use of Personal Experience

These experiences might have been contests, hackathons, or innovation events in which you competed for a prize. Employers respect these kinds of experiences because they demonstrate not only your technical abilities, but also your originality and ability to solve issues under pressure.
For e.g., Cisco provides NetAcad students with several opportunities to put their skills to the test, ranging from the Dream Team to regional NetAcad Hackathons.

Consider how every experience you’ve had – even in non-technical roles or occupations where you’ve demonstrated initiative or accepted responsibility – may play out in an interview situation. Which experiences show leadership? Remember that any experience that demonstrates your leadership abilities will be highly prized by companies.

Reflect whether you have truly demonstrated your abilities or how you can manage a project and bring it to a successful completion. How do your previous experiences relate to the career that fascinates you and prepares you to do a good job? They do not have to be merely technical. There are several job abilities that are required for success.

Last thoughts

The good news is that most businesses do not need young graduates to have extensive paid work experience. Many students, however, undervalue the experience they do have. It’s common for students to have a range of non-related work experiences, but you might not realize that they add significant transferable abilities (such as communication, leadership, conflict resolution, and so on) to your first job after graduation – even if they’re not in a related industry. There is no single sort of experience that prospective employers want in fresh grads. Nonetheless, all companies seek some mix of the following characteristics: substantive knowledge, intellect, and leadership. Fortunately, these abilities may be exhibited in a variety of ways.

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