When you’re applying for a job, you may notice similarities in those job postings. The employer may ask for your education, work history, relevant courses…basically all of the tangible and measurable skills an applicant has to prove their experience in a particular industry. These more technical skills are often referred to as the “hard skills” or the professional knowledge required for a job. But what about the skills required to build great customer relationships? Or how about the mindset and discipline to keep you and your team organized and on track even in the most hectic work environments? In addition to your professional knowledge, “soft skills” like these set an applicant apart from the competition!

What are soft skills?

Soft skills are also known as transferable skills. These types of skills are non-industry specific and can be applied to different jobs across many professions. Soft skills are less specialized and are, for the most part, driven by your attributes and personality. Think of your unique aptitude for customer service, or the way you overcome problems the rest of the team gets stuck on, or how you’re eager to take on a change in the workplace. These types of skills are the soft skills that employers LOVE to see in their team! This skill type is less measurable than hard skills, but allows you to be flexible and adaptable in a variety of roles!

What soft skills are in high demand in today’s job market?

No matter what industry you’re working in, you want to be sure you highlight your soft skills to stand out from other applicants. In today’s job market, some of the most “in demand” soft skills include:

  • Collaboration
  • Organization
  • Creativity
  • Problem-solving
  • Time management
  • Communication
  • Self-motivation
  • Adaptability
  • Leadership
  • Decisiveness

It’s important to review the job posting and tailor your resume to showcase which of your unique soft skills will be relevant and useful to that position. Be sure to have examples ready to showcase moments when you’ve previously demonstrated these soft skills so that you can share this with prospective employers in your interview. Also, don’t forget to ask your references to highlight your soft skills as well as your hard skills for that ‘big sell’ when they get the call.

In fact, when you’re applying for jobs, why not show off those incredible skills? If you’ve got ‘em, flaunt ‘em. Showcasing your soft skills may be just what you need to help your application stand out in a competitive job market. All the education and years of experience don’t automatically mean that you’ll land the job; employers need to know you’re going to fit in nicely with the rest of the staff, you know, to be the right fit. If you need a little guidance on how to highlight your skills, stop by one of our locations and let the team at FOCUS Employment Services help you. We’ve got resume building services, local job postings, workshops and more to help you land your next great job!