What are Transferable Skills?
When interviewing employees or candidates, a recruiter or hiring manager looks for many things. This can include education, qualification, experience, solid references, interview skills and lastly transferrable skills. A Business Dictionary defines “transferable skills” as aptitude and knowledge acquired through personal experience such as schooling, jobs, classes, hobbies, sports etc. Basically, this is a skill or talent developed that can be used in future employment.
Transferable skills are skills that are learned at school, at work, at a hobby or socially that can be taken from there to another environment or job. Recruiters and hiring managers want you to be the right candidate and are looking for reasons to phone screen or interview you. You may not have all the qualifications required on a job application; however, you may still be a great candidate with transferable skills from your past experience. This is relevant for permanent positions and also temporary jobs.
Why are transferable skills important?
They can be very useful if you lack relevant or industry specific experience. Highlighted transferable skills can show strengths that you will bring to a job that may be unique to you. Most recruiters use an Applicant Tracking Software (ATS) to organize resumes for skills, experience and education. List your transferable skills on your resume, as it will help your resume get noticed.
What is an example of a transferable skill?
- Verbal and written communication skills
- Organizational skills
- Proactivity, strategic planning, self-motivation, ability to take initiative
- Dependability, reliability, work ethic
- Punctuality, responsibility
- Leadership and management skills
- Six sigma, emotional intelligence, dealing with stress, people management, business development, strategic management
- Information technology / IT or literacy
- CRMs, Google analytics, coding languages, software skills
- Project management
- Team player
- Collaboration, goal setting, facilitating
- Time management, organizational skills, being self-motivated
- Decision making, planning, delegation, responsibility, conflict resolution
- Problem solving skills
- Research skills / data analysis
How to position transferable skills in your resume?
A few examples of statements of how you can demonstrate your transferable skills are:
In my previous job as an Office Administrator, one of my duties was to draft and proofread documents for my manager; in doing this I learned how to write effectively using persuasive business language.
Working as the Customer Service Manager at XE Company I was known as the Coffee Maker because I am always the first to arrive for work. This shows your dependability and reliability.
At Smith & Smith, I developed sales programs and quotas for the sales department with bonuses that resulted with sales increasing for the department 12% that year. This shows leadership and management skills.
I have successfully managed six projects per quarter across 3 departments which has given me a solid foundation in project management as well as cross department communications.
As a manager in my past position, I utilized data on a daily basis to make analytical decisions to ensure my team was operating effectively and efficiently.
As a Customer Service Manager, I have 10 years of experience successfully responding and resolving customer conflicts while providing valuable insights on how to work with different clients in a multitude of industries.
For more examples of transferable skills check out this article on The Muse.