When applying for jobs, we have a desperate need to do anything we can to stand out. Building a resume becomes an opportunity to sell ourselves as best we can, describing each and every one of the traits and qualities that make us unique and attractive to an employer. There are several different elements that will make you a considerable candidate to an employer, like your work experience, certifications, and credentials, educational background, etc., but one thing that can sometimes be overlooked are skills you’ve accumulated over the years.
Workplace skills are something that is necessary for you to do your job, obviously. But in the grand scheme of things, skills can get overlooked and forgotten about. There is so much more to a resume or job interview than your GPA in college or your internship, skills are unique to you and can help you stand out to your potential employer.
As you are diving into the job search process, you might be curious as to what important skills will boost your resume to the top and up your employability. Here are five skills that will catch the eye of employers and can make you a worthwhile candidate to hire!
What are Employability Skills?
Nearly all hiring managers always look for potential employees with employability skills, but what are these skills? Allison Doyle of The Balance writes, “Employability skills are core skills and traits needed in nearly every job. These are the general skills that make someone desirable to an organization.”
Within the category of employability skills, there are soft skills and hard skills. Soft skills are what many tend to think of as “people” skills, or skills that revolve around your character and ability to work with others/communicate. Hard skills, in contrast, are skills that can be taught, such as something you learned in school, in previous work experience, etc., according to Paige Liwanag of Jobscan. Having a combination of both soft and hard skills will definitely come in handy on a resume and look great in the eyes of an employer.
1. Communication: Perhaps the most commonly referenced skill in the job world, communication is a skill that all employers look for in a job candidate. A person with good communication skills can easily relay information to others, as well as be attentive, a good listener, and write clearly/effectively. Employers want to see someone who is able to demonstrate great written, verbal, and interpersonal communication skills, as those skills can help contribute to better work production and generally, a better workflow.
2. Teamwork: How well are you able to work with others? Share your ideas and take in the suggestions or criticism from coworkers? Carry your part of a workload for a project? These are all questions that relate to your ability to effectively work with members of a team, such as your coworkers. The skill of good teamwork is applicable in nearly all job fields and it is important you show employers that you have what is necessary to work with others, rather than being a control freak. Some qualities that can fall under this skill include reliability, professionalism, conflict management, and collaboration, Allison Doyle notes.
3. Critical Thinking: When a stressful situation arises, are you more likely to charge at it head-on, ready to solve it, or get easily overwhelmed and break down? Can you pick apart pieces of information to understand a greater problem? Critical thinking is a skill that employers appreciate and seek out in a candidate, as it shows you have the ability to reason, analyze, and organize research or ideas necessary to figure out a solution to a problem.
4. Computer Skills: In a society that is dominated by technology, having experience with computers is a must. But computer skills are more in-depth than just being able to “Google” something. Rather, computer skills can include knowledge and experience with Microsoft Office, information and communication technology (ICT), emailing, word processing, search engine optimization (SEO), social media, etc. Depending on your field, having basic computer/technology skills will do the trick.
5. Miscellaneous: There are so many other skills that are worthwhile that haven’t been mentioned yet, so it’s important for you to showcase your skills that are relevant to the prospective job position you are seeking. Applying for a customer service job? Phone etiquette and multitasking are important. Seeking a job in sports coaching? Motivation, enthusiasm, and goal setting are skills necessary for that position. When building a resume and interviewing for a job, be sure to review the position description and include skills that are listed, so you can look like a solid fit for the position.
As you put yourself out into the job market, remember the importance of employability skills and be sure to highlight your specific skills to make you stand out to your employer and secure the job of your dreams.