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10 July 2017 · by Eva Koukouraki How to Make the Most of your Transferable Skills

Whether you are a seasoned professional looking for a career change or a recent graduate, transferable skills will help you stand out in an interview and land your dream job.

Transferable skills are defined as a set of skills which can be transferred from one job to another, irrespective of industry. You can acquire these skills throughout your studies, during an internship, through a previous role or even a hobby.

Why are transferable skills important to employers?

At a time when employers are more and more selective and roles are no longer as clearly defined, having transferable skills is just as important as industry related experience.

Why develop your transferable skills?

  1. Increase your employability: You can build a strong CV around transferable skills and make up for the lack of industry-specific experience. By focusing on specific skills, you help the potential employer make a better and more immediate connection between you and the role.
  2. Highlight your adaptability: You can show a potential employer that your skills can be applied to various different roles. In doing so, you not only meet the company’s current needs but clearly demonstrate how you can contribute in the future.
  3. Break into different industries: You can move across different sectors and have a more diverse career. Whether you are looking for a more lucrative role or simply want to challenge yourself, transferable skills are the best way to demonstrate your suitability for a role.

How to identify your transferable skills?

  1. Educate yourself: The first step to solving any problem is analysing it. Once you have decided on a role, read as many job descriptions as you can. You will notice that certain keywords repeat themselves and they are either job-specific or generic. Using Salesforce, for example, is a technical skill whereas being proactive is a transferable skill. Make a list of popular transferable skills and keep it for future reference.
  2. Reflect on your experience: Looking at your previous experience, make a detailed list of tasks and achievements. Think of the skills you used to achieve your goals and the skills you acquired along the way. For example, a recent graduate might have been responsible for organising various student events; in doing so, she used her analytical, planning and delegation skills and honed her negotiation and communication skills.
  3. Match them up: Take the list from step 1 and compare it to your transferable skills from step 2. Doing this will clearly show you how your skills match up to the role. More often than not, two completely unrelated roles will have many overlapping skills. For example, an English teacher can apply for an administrative role which requires attention to detail, working to deadlines and communication skills by highlighting tasks such as correcting students’ homework, returning tests on time and talking to parents.

Now that you know how to find your transferable skills go ahead and update your transferable skills CV and cover letter! Take the next step in your career by applying for one of our jobs here.