10 skills employers will want the most in 2020

  • The World Economic Forum released its The Future of Jobs report, which predicts how technology will transform the workplace.
  • As technology advances, jobs will change and different skills will be required.
  • Negotiation skills, emotional intelligence, and people management will be incredibly important for employees to master.
  • Complex problem-solving will be the most valuable skill an employee can have.

Have you got the key skills graduate employers look for? You’ll need to give examples of these essential competencies in your job applications and interviews to impress recruiters and get hired.

Graduate employers place a lot of emphasis on finding candidates with the right skills and competencies for their organisations. Depending on the career sector and profession you choose to work in, there could be very specific skills, abilities and knowledge needed to do the job. However, complementing these are general competencies and behaviours that are essential for successful working. These are the key employability skills – the core skills that will make you effective at work, whatever job you do. They are sometimes known as transferable skills because you develop them over time and take them with you as your career develops; think of them as your passport to career success. You’ll need to draw on your work experience to give evidence of these skills.

 1) Complex problem-solving

Technology can make life easier, but it can also make things more complicated. For example, you could use wearables to help map the walking patterns of nurses and doctors in a hospital to see how to make things more efficient. But without a human being analyzing those results while also having intelligent conversations with nurses, doctors, and patients, you will likely end up with a wrong or even dangerous result.

The report shows that 36% of all jobs across all industries will require complex problem-solving abilities as a core skill by 2020.

2) Critical thinking

As automation increases, the need for humans who can employ logic and reasoning increases. This is, in part, because machines must be directed ethically and optimally. Employers want people with critical minds who can evaluate the uses or abuses of the power of technology, and use them to benefit the company, the people in it, and the future.

3) Creativity

In 2015, creativity ranked 10th on the list. It’s now one of the top three skills employers will seek. Why? Because as we’re bombarded by new technologies, employers want creative people who can apply that tech to new products and services.

4) People management

In the report, this included being able to motivate people, develop the talents and skills of employees, and pick the best people for a job. This will be especially in demand for managers in the media and energy industries.

5) Coordinating with others

Again, this falls under the social skills umbrella (sensing a trend?). It involves being able to collaborate, adjust in relation to others, and be sensitive to the needs of others.

6) Emotional intelligence

Robots can do a lot, but they still can’t read people the way other humans can (at least not yet). Employers will place a strong emphasis on hiring those who are aware of others’ reactions, as well as their own impact on others.

7) Judgment and decision-making

As organisations collect more and more data, there will be an even greater need for workers who can analyze it and use it to make intelligent decisions. Good judgment also involves knowing how to get buy-in from a colleague, or making a strong suggestion to a manager (even if it might not make you popular).

8) Service orientation

This was defined as actively seeking ways to help others. How much do you assist those on your team, your superiors, and people across your industry? How much are you known for that?

9) Negotiation skills

This will be in especially high demand in computer and math jobs, such as data analysis and software development. It will also be critical in the arts and design (including commercial and industrial designers).

10) Cognitive flexibility

This involves creativity, logical reasoning, and problem sensitivity. It also means being able to adapt how you communicate based on who you’re talking to. Employers want to know you don’t just say the same thing to everyone — that you think critically about who you’re talking to, deeply listen, and tailor communication to that person.

Take a look at this list in aggregate, and it’s clear that if you want to prepare for 2020 and beyond!

Credit: usinessinsider.com

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