What are transferable skills? Should I mention them in my job applications?
As you begin your job search, it is important to highlight your own skills. Over the years you have developed many skills from coursework, extracurricular activities and from your total life experiences. For example, if you have completed an individual or a group project and you have presented it, you have used skills which are not limited to that particular academic discipline but are transferable to many occupations. A prospective employer expects you to be able to apply the skills you have learned in college to the work environment.
Here is a list of the transferable skills that are particularly popular with graduate recruiters:
- Communication: ability to communicate orally, in writing or via electronic means in a manner appropriate to the audience
- Teamwork: being a constructive team member, contributing practically to the success of the team
- Leadership: being able to motivate and encourage others, whilst taking the lead
- Initiative: ability to see opportunities and to set and achieve goals
- Problem-solving: thinking things through in a logical way in order to determine key issues. Creative thinking is also useful
- Flexibility/ability: ability to handle change and adapt to new situations
- Self-awareness: knowing your strengths and skills and having the confidence to put these across
- Commitment/motivation: having energy and enthusiasm in pursuing projects
- Interpersonal skills: ability to relate well to others and to establish good working relationships
- Numeracy: competence and understanding of numerical data, statistics and graphs.