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Transferable skills – your personal advantage

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If you’re in the process of polishing your resume in preparation for a new job search, you’ll want to make sure to include a section with transferable skills. Transferable skills are important for recent graduates, career changers, or anyone who’s been out of the workforce for a significant period of time. Not sure which transferable skills to include? Read on for the ultimate transferable skills list.

 What Are Transferable Skills?

Transferable skills are skills you acquire during your education, internships, or through work experience that you bring with you to future employment settings. Some common examples of transferable hard skills include:

  • Experience with computer programs
  • Management experience
  • Proficiency in another language
  • Typing

Transferable skills can also include soft skills, and employers are finding these transferable skills increasingly valuable in new hires. A recent study by LiveCareer identified the most in-demand soft skills to discover what specific traits employers value the most. Based on that data, when creating a transferable skills list, be sure to include these in-demand soft skills:

  • Customer service
  • Written and verbal communication
  • Problem-solving
  • Organizational skills

Why Should I Include Transferable Skills in My Resume?

Transferable skills help you market yourself to employers and creating a transferable skills list on your resume is an excellent way for them to see at-a-glance what you’ll bring to the table if you are hired.

For instance, if you’re a former teacher applying for a customer service job or office support role, your resume should include transferable skills like strong communication skills and leadership skills. These skills that you developed so that in the classroom will transfer nicely to a new position in customer service.

Who Needs Transferable Skills?

Including transferable skills on a resume is especially important for individuals who are changing job titles, or who are moving to different fields altogether. They are also critical for recent college graduates who have little to no work experience, and those who have been out of the general workforce for a while.

In short, if you don’t have direct experience related to the job title you are seeking, transferable skills are crucial.

For example, a new college grad who worked as a campus tour guide while in college has developed solid communication skills and customer service skills while leading prospective students and families on guided tours. These skills are applicable to a variety of customer-facing roles, such as a hostess, customer service rep, and tech support, among many other examples.

Incorporating Transferable Skills in Your Resume

Your transferable skills list should be included towards the top of your resume, underneath the summary section. To help you get started, review the comprehensive transferable skills lists below, which are divided into common categories to help you pick out the ones you need.

Transferable Skills List: Communication

This section refers to the expression, transmission, and interpretation of knowledge and ideas, and includes these specific skills:

  • Speaking effectively
  • Writing concisely
  • Listening attentively
  • Expressing ideas
  • Facilitating group discussion
  • Providing appropriate feedback, either independently or when asked
  • Negotiating
  • Perceiving nonverbal messages
  • Persuading others
  • Reporting information
  • Describing feelings
  • Interviewing
  • Editing

Transferable Skills List: Research and Planning

This list includes your ability to conceptualize future needs, your solutions for meeting those needs, and your search for specific knowledge that’s required for completing a task.

  • Forecasting and predicting
  • Creating ideas
  • Identifying problems
  • Imagining alternatives
  • Identifying appropriate resources
  • Gathering information
  • Solving problems
  • Setting goals
  • Extracting important information
  • Defining needs and requirements
  • Analyzing information
  • Developing evaluation strategies

Transferable Skills List: Interpersonal Skills and Human Relations

This refers to your ability to work well with others, especially when it involves conflict resolution or problem-solving.

  • Developing rapport with coworkers and customers
  • Being sensitive to others
  • Listening
  • Conveying feelings appropriately
  • Providing support for others
  • Motivating others
  • Sharing credit with colleagues
  • Counseling
  • Cooperating
  • Delegating with respect
  • Representing others
  • Accurately perceiving feelings or situations
  • Asserting

Transferable Skills List: Creative Thinking Skills

This list includes competencies related to thinking critically or being flexible in your thinking. You might need to spot patterns in the information you’re analyzing, for instance, or devise a new solution to an ongoing problem.

  • Demonstrating cognitive flexibility, thinking outside the box
  • Conceptualizing situations
  • Showing curiosity
  • Being imaginative
  • Predicting and anticipating shortfalls
  • Showing foresight
  • Making abstract connections
  • Making inferences
  • Synthesizing ideas

Transferable Skills List: Organization, Management, and Leadership Skills

These skills relate to your ability to supervise, direct, and guide individuals and groups in the completion of tasks and fulfillment of goals.

  • Initiating new ideas
  • Handling details
  • Coordinating and planning tasks
  • Managing groups
  • Delegating responsibility to others
  • Teaching
  • Counseling
  • Coaching
  • Promoting change
  • Selling ideas or products
  • Decision making with others
  • Managing conflict
  • Following through on tasks
  • Multitasking
  • Demonstrating effective time management

Transferable Skills List: Work Survival Skills

These are the day-to-day, nitty-gritty skills that assist in promoting effective production and work satisfaction.

  • Making and implementing decisions
  • Cooperating
  • Enforcing policies or established rules
  • Being punctual
  • Managing time wisely
  • Attending to detail
  • Meeting goals, both short-term and long-term
  • Enlisting the help of others when you need it
  • Accepting responsibility
  • Setting deadlines and meeting them
  • Organizing

Whether you’re jumping back into the workforce, a recent college grad, or exploring a new career path, you’re bound to get better results and callbacks for jobs you apply for when you make sure to include a transferable skills list on your resume. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to impress a prospective employer with the talents and aptitudes you’ve developed over the years. They just might be the things that tip the scales in your favor and earn you your next dream job.





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