What are Transferable Skills? — Your Definitive Guide

What are Transferable Skills? — Your Definitive Guide

Transferable skills are a core set of skills, abilities and characteristics, which anyone can apply to a variety of jobs and industries.

It is usually gained over time — a result of previous work or life experiences that can be useful in any job role that an individual wants to pursue.

Having this set of skills is a great way to show you’re just what your potential employers are looking for in a certain job offer. It’s good to include a list in your résumé/CV.

If you’re still wondering just what exactly transferable skills are, and how these set of abilities can help you land the job you are applying for, then read on and take note of the following key points about transferable skills:


Why are Transferable Skills Important?

Employers often look for people who can demonstrate a good set of transferable skills. The good news is, you already have this set of skills and abilities.

Throughout your life, you have already developed transferable skills — knowingly or unknowingly. Experiences from your home, in your school, in your social life, and in your previous work experience, has contributed in building your own set of transferable skills.

How can these set of skills and abilities help you? Well, just consider them as your “selling points” to employers. This can sometimes spell the difference between you and others who are applying for the same position as you are. You can both be similar in all other characteristics and qualifications for a role, but a good set of transferable skills displayed on your résumé or CV can give you the edge over anyone else. It is important to note that most employers nowadays highly consider a good combination of character and skill, which is why pairing your qualifications with soft skills can really boost your employability.


Your Skills Checklist

As mentioned earlier, you can consider your transferable skills, apart from your other qualifications, your “selling points” to your employer. It is then important that you know what you’re putting in your résumé for companies to see.

Here are the common soft skills and abilities that most organisations consider when hiring new employees:


1. Teamwork

Most jobs will require you to work in a group or team to effectively achieve goals and produce results. It is vital for you to establish that you are a team player and is capable of working with others, as this reassures your employers that you can gel with a group and provide valuable contributions.

List down examples of how you displayed being a team player in your previous experiences in school, work, or life in general.


2. Leadership Skills

Not every role requires leadership and management skills, and you may not be applying in a position that needs this, but it is still good to be able to show your capability as a leader.

This shows your potential to lead a team or group, even if you’re not really applying for a managerial role or anything similar. Employers love employees with great potential — someone they can train over time and potentially acquire a leadership role in the future. This is not to say and guarantee that you will be placed in a leadership role, but at least your employers have you under their radars.


3. Verbal Communication

Being able to communicate clearly is a skill highly considered by any employer anywhere you go. Strong verbal communication is one of the most charming traits of an employee — and you get to display your proficiency in this area right away during your interview when you apply for a job.

Employers are keen about hiring employees with good verbal communication skills since it is a skill that can tell so much about an employee — intelligence, politeness, your thought process, and heaps more. In your résumé/CV, be sure to add instances in your previous experiences that showed and displayed proficiency in verbal communication.


4. Written Communication

Producing reports, letters, emails, press releases and marketing materials are some of the forms of written outputs that you may be required to do in the working field. You should already have heaps of experience in writing, as it’s something that you’ve been doing since your school days. But of course, at this stage, it’s about writing in a professional and intelligent tone and manner. With the experience you have accumulated, this is somehow a soft skill that is expected of a great employee — something that should also go hand in hand with verbal proficiency.


5. Numeracy Skills

Last but not least, is your ability in numbers. While not everyone is applying for a job role that requires deep mathematical or statistical capabilities, it’s definitely a plus for employers.

The fact is, numbers are everywhere. At one point or another, you’re going to have to deal with numbers. Not to mention that it is certainly part of business matters. Costs, funding, and budgeting are some of the areas where numbers come to play in a business. It’s somehow safe to say that you should be decent with numbers, just in case you have to deal with these areas.

These are just five out of heaps of transferable or soft skills that can be helpful and relevant in various areas. If you’re on a job search, consider adding them to your CV or résumé and boost your image to your potential employers!

Just be truthful about it, and be ready to prove that you indeed possess whatever you list down. Do that, and you’re good to go.


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