These 10 Skills Will Drastically Improve Your Chances of Being Hired in 2017
Grow Your Business, Not Your Inbox
It’s no longer enough to only have competence in your primary field of expertise. Employers want to hire informed candidates who have the skills needed to handle all the unexpected curveballs that might be thrown their way. Fortunately, if you have (or decide to acquire) these highly sought-after skills, you can set yourself apart from other candidates in today’s new job market.
With that in mind, here are 10 of the most sought-after skills that hiring managers are loving right now.
1. Foreign languages
The business world is becoming more globalized than ever. Companies that choose to restrict themselves to the United States will simply lose out to competitors that are willing to expand into other continents like Asia and Europe. Because of this, many firms specifically tell recruiters to find job applicants who know a foreign language. That way, they’ll have employees who are capable of communicating with clients who might feel more comfortable with their native language.
2. Web development
Studies show that e-commerce is growing 23 percent year-over-year, and 8 out of 10 consumers now shop online. If businesses don’t have a website by now, they’ll be on the lookout to get one. Having an employee with some basic web development skills such as HTML, CSS and WordPress can be extremely useful to a company’s e-commerce efforts. This is particularly the case for smaller businesses that don’t have a separate team of web developers dedicated to building and maintaining the company website.
3. Data analysis
We live in a data-driven world. Whether it’s a real estate agency or a mutual fund or an online marketing firm, every business has an ever-increasing amount of facts and statistics at its disposal. The companies that are going to succeed in today’s era of big data are the ones that will be able to organize, understand, and utilize this information to the utmost effectiveness. Even if your industry might not seem particularly data-oriented just yet, businesses are always thinking ahead and planning for the future. So with this in mind, if you have some statistics know-how or machine learning chops, make sure to highlight this on your resume!
4. Mobile development
Everyone has a smartphone these days, and mobile devices are playing an increasingly important role in our lives. Businesses are all rushing to create mobile-friendly versions of their applications and websites, and they need people to help them do it. Whether you’re a mobile UI guru or an iOS development whiz, your skills and expertise will be in high demand for a long time to come.
5. Cloud computing
Cloud computing has been at the cutting edge of technology for a couple years now, and it’s still as hot as ever! At its core, cloud computing creates a sharable pool of computing resources online, and businesses are drawn to the flexibility, scalability and low costs that this engenders. Even if you’re not a hardcore SaaS programming ninja, having some experience with Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud Platform or Microsoft Azure can make you a much more attractive job candidate to a lot of firms out there.
6. Social media skills
Nowadays, company marketing campaigns and outreach strategies are all about harnessing social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat. Showing that you understand the language of social media isn’t just a useful skill to have, but a necessity in this day and age. Of course, depending on the position you’re apply for, adding a link to your Pinterest account on your resume might not make the most sense, but you should at least point out your LinkedIn profile so employers can see that you’re not completely in the dark about social media.
7. Computer programming
Automation has become a big trend. Businesses have realized that automating their processes as much as possible will play a key role in creating an efficient business model that scales cost-effectively. Hiring managers often have a preference for job applicants with some knowledge of C++, Python or another programming language, even if the job doesn’t necessarily involve coding directly. The ability to program also hints to companies that you are a logical thinker and good problem solver.
8. Ability to learn quickly
Businesses and industries are transforming more rapidly than ever before. On top of that, companies have been adopting far looser organizational structures than they used to. Employees are now given a wide range of responsibilities, and they are being delegated tasks that aren’t necessarily within the realm of their primary areas of expertise. Both of these trends have caused companies to put a heavy emphasis on not just what job candidates know now, but how quickly they can pick up fresh ideas and skills. If possible, try to show an example of when you once learned and made use of a new skill while on the job. That way, hiring managers can tell you’re a quick study.
9. Collaborative mindset
Gone are the days when your boss would give you a solo assignment that had you sitting in a cubical by yourself until you finished the job. The new consensus is that working in teams and collaborating with others is the best way to get things done. Make sure to provide examples showing how you’ve worked on group projects in the past. This way companies know that you’d be a great team player if hired.
10. Whatever the job requires
Now more than ever, the most important skills to have on your resume are simply the skills mentioned in the description of the job you’re applying for. Obviously the listed skills are the most applicable, and so recruiters will naturally be looking for those when going through your resume. However, on top of that, more and more companies are integrating applicant tracking systems into their hiring processes to make first round cuts. These computer applications automatically sift through all of the resumes received for a job posting to see which ones might be a good fit, so include the right skills on your resume to make sure you’re not screened out right off the bat.
(By Peter Yang)