Quantify Your Skills Whenever Possible
Saying you are a â60 word per minute typistâ has far more impact than a âfast typist.â
âMeasurables are incredibly valuable to your resume anything with numbers, percentages, or dollar signs immediately draws the readerâs eye and gives tangible examples of how you made a difference,â says Jennifer.
What Soft Skills Should I Use On My Resume
Soft skills are more open to interpretation than hard skills, so you need to work harder to demonstrate these specific skills on your resumeâthere are some great examples on this US News piece). Because soft skills are often people skills, hiring managers are always on the lookout for them. Soft skills can make or break your candidacy, and are especially important if youâre applying for highly-nuanced, creative roles in marketing, advertising, or customer service.
Continuing down the list of top skills, the remaining five skills are examples of soft skills.
So What Does This All Actually Look Like
Heres an example of a good skills section for someone who is looking for work as a designer:
Visual Design:InDesign, Illustrator, Photoshop, After Effects, Premiere, XD, Animate, Lightroom3D Modeling & 2D Drafting:Rhino, VRay, AutoCAD, Vectorworks, Autodesk Fusion 360Programming:Grasshopper, Processing, HTML, CSSInterests:Sailing, running, cooperative board games
And here is one that is less good:
InDesign, Illustrator, Photoshop, Lightroom, Quark, Rhino, Grasshopper, VRay, AutoCAD, After Effects, Premiere, XD, Vectorworks, Processing, Animate, Autodesk Fusion 360, HTML, CSS, Microsoft Office, typography, teamwork, creativity, multitasking, sailing, running, cooperative board games
The difference, as you can see, is all about pulling out relevant hard skills and breaking them up into relevant subheadings. Even though this section is short, it still needs to be easy to skim . Bullets and subheadings prompt the reader to start reading again. And as a bonus, they cue the reader on what broad skills the candidate has.
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Which Type Of Skill Should You Emphasize On Your Resume
There are some quarters that believe soft skills are more important because hard skills can be taught or learned. A persons set of soft skills is a product of his work and life experiences.
The best approach would be to find out the nature of the job. If you are required to deal with people on a daily basis as in customer service work, then it may be advisable to tilt the balance more toward soft skills. But if the job is highly technical in nature, such as that of a Cyber Security Specialist, the Hiring Manager may place a higher premium on the candidates hard skills.
Top 10 Soft Skills Employers Love: 90+ Examples
Knowing which soft skills to highlight in your resume could set you apart from candidates with similar sets of hard skills. Your education, degree, and certifications might help you get an interview, but your soft skills are what will help land you the job.
Here are some of the top soft skills to highlight on your resume:
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General Skills For Resumes Cover Letters And Interviews
When you’re writing resumes and cover letters and applying for jobs, there are certain skills that employers expect job applicants to have. These are general skills that apply to almost any job.
Make sure that you highlight these skills when you’re job searching and emphasize them in job applications, resumes, cover letters, and interviews.
In Your Experience Section
The other place you should highlight your soft skills is in the experience section of your resume.
This is ideal for showing off your soft skills, because experience bullet points allow you to go into detail about how your soft skills helped you achieve things at work and deliver results.
For instance, heres a resume work experience section that highlights soft skills throughout:
- Oversee a team managing daily restaurant operations, focusing on seamless service delivery and customer satisfaction
- Analyze operational issues and develop plans of action to improve performance, services, and safety
- Streamline workflow procedures and minimize labor costs through effective staff scheduling and delegation
- Develop and maintain friendly relationships with customers, leading to an increase in regulars
- Train staff to deliver high-level customer service, resulting in a 20% increase in sales
Note that within five short bullet points, this candidate is able to highlight a variety of soft skills, including leadership, organizational skills, interpersonal skills, and problem-solving.
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Back Up Your Skills With Other Resume Sections
If you mention Food Prepping – Advanced as one of your skills, you should have food prepping roles or other organizations described throughout your work experience to back that up. Put your money where your mouth is.
You can check out our guide on how to write a resume to have a clearer idea of how to connect your resume sections with one another.
Where To Put The Skills Section:
There is no simple right or wrong answer on where to put your skills section, simply because it differs by industry, company, and job. However, there are different options that you can consider.
- Additional Skills Section: Usually placed toward the bottom of the resume and appropriate for jobs that value past experience the most, with a Professional Experience section towards the top of the resume.
- Key Skills Section: Listed at the top of the resume to showcase your abilities and appropriate if you are lacking work experience.
- Technical/Computer Skills Section: When applying for a technical position that requires a very specific skillset, this section will be placed at the top of the resume, just below the Resume Profile.
You can also make use of a resume builder.
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How To Include Collaboration And Teamwork In Your Resume
Here are some terms you can use to emphasize your collaborative spirit:
- Shed light on your ability to empathize with team members and work according to targets as well as emergencies.
- Mention how youre always ready to cove for a team member.
- All members of a team arent the same. Some will pick up details faster than others. Highlight your ability to be patient and accommodating towards others and work as a team.
3. Takes Initiatives.
- Highlight your demonstrated history of taking the initiative while working in a group.
- Emphasize how you can steer a team project towards completion with your inputs.
- Highlight past instances where you took an initiative.
- Demonstrate how you help generate trust in team members and create a conducive work environment.
- Explain how your work ethic improves when team members rely on you to deliver.
5. Division of labor
- Emphasize your ability to divide work according to resources and expertise, which helps in the efficient completion of tasks.
Best Skills To Add To Your Resume In 2021
The rule of thumb is: stay relevant. What does it mean in practice?
First, its advised to limit the length of your resume to no more than two pages. This shouldnt be a problem, as nowadays resume builders make it really simple to keep things concise.
Basically, by having a long resume you risk the hiring manager losing interest.
Hence, you need to provide only the most relevant information and because things move so fast in todays day and age you also need to make sure the information is up to date.
But how can you tell which of your skills are up to date and relevant for the job you want?
Easy, by following these 3 tips:
- Print it out.
- Highlight skills that are essential for the job.
These skills are the keywords that both the hiring managers and the ATS will be looking for.
Once youve done that, see how many of those skills you already have and list them in your skills section.
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Boost Your Skills In The Work Experience Section
The work experience section of your resume should be achievement-oriented to showcase how you have used your skills to produce satisfactory results at your previous jobs. This section reinforces your experience and proves that you can use your skills in a real-life work situation.
To create a great achievement-oriented work experience section, you can use the Problem, Action, Result method:
- Problem: Identify an issue at your previous job.
- Action: Show how you used a skill to resolve the problem.
- Result: Highlight the positive result of your action.
Once you have this drafted, you can then create a single achievement-oriented bullet point to highlight your chosen skill. You can also add numbers, percentages, or other bits of data to quantify your skills. For example, you could say that you implemented a new project management software that increased the efficiency of your team by 15%. This highlights your project management skills.
Make Sure Your Resume Has A Clear Message
The hiring manager should know exactly who you are as a professional and what your goals are. Having too much information can confuse the hiring manager about your goals and can frankly cause them to lose interest in reading your resume.
âDo not approach your resume with the mindset that you have to include everything youâve ever done in your career,â Jennifer advises.
âThe hiring manager needs tangible proof that you are qualified for the job they are seeking to fill. For example, if you are applying for a senior-level executive position, it is not relevant to the hiring manager that you worked as a Customer Service Associate in Retail while in college. Eliminate experiences that are not applicable to your goal, and do not exceed a 2-page document length.â
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What Should I Do If My Skills Dont Match The Job Description
During your job search, youâre probably going to come across a job that looks perfect for your goals. Unfortunately, the employer asks for skills that you donât have. What should you do?
First, determine whether the skills are hard skills or soft skills. If a job requires specific technical skills to be successful and you donât have them, you likely shouldnât apply. You wouldnât do well in this position, and this is exactly the type of qualification that ATS scans are designed to filter out. You should spend your time on other job applications or learning those skills instead.
When youâre lacking soft skills, you can try to leverage similar experiences or transferable skills. You might not have experience managing a department, but you may have managed a project. Include that on your resume instead. If youâre not experienced at public speaking, mention your experience leading a meeting or being interviewed for a podcast instead. Do your best to relate the soft skills you have to the work experience you lack.
Keep in mind that some jobs have requirements that an employer wonât budge on. It is important to include every single one of these requirements in your resumeâs skills section. Identify these skills in the job description with the markers ârequirementsâ or âbasic qualifications.â In shorter job descriptions, you may have to infer which desired skills are the core requirements of the job.
Top Hard Skills For Your Resume
Hard skills tend to be more technical, and each industry or type of job will usually have its own required set. Finding out what range of hard skills youll be expected to have in your field might require some research. Here are some hard skills that tend to be in-demand across many industries.
Computer Software and Application Knowledge
The list of professions that does not require you to use computers and certain types of software is very short. You could very likely break up computer skills into two or three specific technical proficiencies for your field.
Aside from the obvious professions like graphic or web design, there are jobs in marketing, advertising, branding, engineering, and construction that require some type of design skillseven if its only for drawing up presentations.
Understand data is very much in vogue right now, and there are a lot of jobs out there where you will be called upon to analyze metrics and extrapolate a practical use from it, making analytical skills extremely valuable to put on your resume.
There are many jobs that involve selling a product or service, purchasing stock or merchandise, brokering deals for production or transportation, establishing partnerships for advertising or investments, and so on.
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Highlight The Most Relevant Skills In Your Resume Profile
The resume profile is a short paragraph at the top of your resume that gives an overview of your career and explains why you are a good candidate for the position you are applying for. You can write this either as a resume summary or as a resume objective .
However you choose to write your resume profile, remember to include 2 to 3 of the most relevant skills that the employer will expect.
Put Them Among Your Work Experience Bullets
One of the best ways to showcase your skills on a resume is by writing resume work experience bullet points that feature your greatest professional accomplishments. These bullets then show that you not only possess certain skills, but also prove youve used them to produce results for previous employers.
Simply follow these three steps and youll be able to reinforce your experience section with skills that help you attract recruiters and impress hiring managers.
Step 1: Make a list of all your relevant skills
List every ability you feel is relevant to the target position. If youre struggling to think of any, use the job descriptions used in ads from your industry, as well as looking at LinkedIn profiles of people working in similar roles.
Once youve created your list, go through and circle all the skills that are relevant to you. These skills should be your focus.
Step 2: Create achievement-oriented bullet points
Once you have your list of skills, convert these skills into bullet points that show you produce positive results. The easiest way to do this is by using the STAR method.
Check out how a project manager used the STAR method to emphasize their communication skills:
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What Are The Best Skills To Put On A Resume
Its no secret that many hiring managers spend only a short amount of time looking at a resume before deciding whether to pass on a job candidate or add them to the shortlist. What you may not know is, employers today are looking for both hard and soft skills on your resume. Read any job posting, for example, and you might see the following requests:
- Computer skills
- Collaboration talent
- Problem-solving abilities
These skills and attributes, and others we discuss in this post, are essential for todays workplace. Hard skills are the technical skills required to accomplish the tasks and responsibilities associated with the job. Theyre acquired through practice, education and training. Theyre measurable and easy to advertise: You either have the desired technical skills and experience, or you dont. Your work history and certifications will speak to them.
Soft skills, or interpersonal skills, reflect ones personality and personal attributes. They can relate to an ability to fit into a companys work culture, handle stress, communicate clearly or play well with others, for example. They may be soft, but theyre important skills for a resume: When job candidates possess comparable experience levels and technical skills, soft skills can tip the balance.
See later sections for tips on how to showcase soft and hard skills on your resume. But lets talk first about which skills employers are looking for.
Customize Your Skills To Fit The Position
Hiring managers and recruiters do not spend a lot of time going through a resume. Studies have shown that on average, they may only scan your resume for no more than 6 seconds. In that short amount of time, they are actively looking for keywords and specific skill sets that are integral to the job position.
When writing your resume, you should always customize your skills to fit the position. As discussed in the preceding section, reviewing the job post and identifying skill requirements is a good place to start. But you should look for other definitive reference points.
For example, visit the companys website. Review their About Us page and see if your soft skills or attributes are aligned with the companys core values. Go over their Latest News page and take note of the companys current developments.
Are they launching a new product, system or innovation? Are they involved in a number of socio-civic projects? How involved is the company in developing its own people?
You should also check their social media pages and take note if they are frequently citing specific hard and soft skills that are sought after by the company. Ask yourself if you have any of these hard and soft skills.
In other words, try to learn as much as you can about the company. Try to internalize company culture and build an understanding on who they are and what they represent.
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What Can I Include In A Skills Section
Your resume skills section should mainly be reserved for your hard skills. Think programming languages, business or design software, analytics programs, subject-matter expertise, or even carpentry skillsanything that can be taught, defined, and measured.
Keywords are important, but that doesnt mean you should cram every last thing in here. Pay particular attention to skills that are relevant, but havent necessarily been part of your daily job. Perhaps you took an online course on how to use InDesign or independently studied web design and HTML for your personal website. These skills will be absent from your experience section, which means the skills section is the only chance you get to highlight them.
Just a word of warning: Listing skills on a resume implies youre confident in your abilities. So leave off anything that youre still working on or dont feel comfortable training someone else in .