Advancing Your Career and Wowing Future Employers: Essential Skills to Put on Your Resume


Wowing would-be employers may seem like a tall order, especially when you are at a point where you are ready to take that next step forward in advancing your career, and an impressive spread on your resumé is the key to achieving just that.

Writing a resumé can be overwhelming, but the trickiest part is enumerating the relevant skills to include. The rest of the information, such as contact details, work experiences, and references are pretty straightforward and ineluctable. Besides your previous job experiences, the most critical list any future employer will look for is your skillset.

Essential skills are the bedrock for learning and acquiring additional expertise. These foundations are the essence of advancing or growing into different skill sets needed for career advancement.

The essential skills listed should be relevant and specified to the nature of your application. Sure, computer programming skills are impressive, but they will not be as useful or relevant as interpersonal skills if you apply for a healthcare job.

Here are the must-have essentials skills to include when you’re finally ready to write a professional resume:

Computer & digital

While these skills are different on their own, they do go hand-in-hand with today’s digital age. Computer and digital skills are not just limited to careers in IT or digital marketing. Computer skills rely on more rudimentary, computer-use ability, such as navigating applications and basic software with ease. In contrast, digital skills tackle one’s aptitude to navigate online platforms and various ranges of networks to obtain and manage information needed.

Almost everything is on the internet, and pieces of information are literally at our fingertips. Being tech-savvy is a given to digital natives. However, it’s essential to have more than basic

know-how to compete with applicants who have the tenacity for anything techie in order to stand-out to prospective employers.

Customer service

Regardless of whether your job requires you to face a customer or not, having the skill to cater to an individual effectively and hospitably is vital in any industry. A “customer” is not limited to a person who brings in revenue, but can also apply to colleagues as well.

Being attuned to providing an enjoyable experience for the people around you positively impacts your environment. Customer service skills are a package of other valuable attributes. With this skill set comes patience, level-headedness, empathy, persuasiveness, and attentiveness, which many employers want their employees to have.

Critical thinking

An employee who does not take things at face value and who approaches scenarios with a clear and rational thinking process is an asset to any company.

The ability to think critically demonstrates one’s aptitude to identify obscure problems, systematically analyze situations, and offer logical solutions to issues that arise in the work environment. Employers want nothing more than trustworthy employees who require minimal supervision and can be relied on to work independently and efficiently.


Whether it’s written or non-verbal, communicating effectively with others is a crucial skill in any organization. Effective communication is a two-way street, ensuring that the sender’s method of imparting information to the recipient is clear, concise, and eliminates any room for misinterpretation.

It’s a misconception that effective communication skills are always developed easily. In addition to speaking and talking, communication involves active listening, relaying non-verbal information, and selecting the best medium for transmitting the details. Giving and receiving feedback with an open mind are also key traits in an effective communicator..

Miscommunication causes unnecessary issues and problems within an organization that could easily be avoided by having an employee with strong and effective communication skills.


Many people have the capacity to lead, but not all have the ability to manage. While it is common knowledge that leadership skills are vital, not all applicants are confident enough to include “management” on their list of essential skills.

According to the Harvard Business Review, “Leadership is simply a practical effort to direct affairs; and to fulfill his or her task. A manager requires that many people operate efficiently at different levels of status and responsibility.”

While leadership skills are anticipated from prospective employees, management skills indicate a much more professional demeanour and impressive potential to a hiring organization.


More universally known as teamwork, collaborating with diverse individuals has become a particularly valuable skill as the prevalence of work-from-home and remote jobs has increased.

Employees with collaborative mindsets help to create organizations in which employees work together, brainstorm ideas, share concepts, and encourage each other’s creativity. These working conditions lead to a speedier output of service or product and a higher efficiency rate.

One of the common questions during interviews is, “Do you prefer working independently or with a team?”. The safe answer is “both,” highlighting that while you have no qualms working independently, working with a team brings out inspirations and a different kind of productivity that just cannot be achieved alone.

Employers value collaborative and teamwork skills, as over 70% agree that this skill is essential.

Time management

Employers and business owners alike often wonder what employees do during their duty hours. Some employees may need more time to complete tasks, while others may consciously pace themselves, so they don’t run out of tasks for the day. Neither demonstrates practical time management skills, though the latter shows more capability of being trained to use work time effectively.

Effective time management skills lead to more efficient task completion, higher productivity, and a stress-free working environment. Mastering this skill allows you to assess which tasks need more urgent focus and attention and therefore take priority. From the employers’ perspective, time management skills ensure that their employees can complete more tasks during their work day, and remaining free time can be used to hone or develop more skills or access learning opportunities.

Either way, time management is one of the most valuable skills employers look for, as it always leads to success for both employers and employees.

While your resume and content will impress prospective employers and may land you the job, your performance and skills will keep the job. Don’t be tempted to input random skills that you don’t truly possess. List down traits and skills that you own and those that you’ve been praised for.

Skills relevant to your desired position can fall under a broad umbrella of categories. Get creative with rephrasing skills and ensure that you can demonstrate all of the skills you list on your resume. While you certainly want to wow a potential employer, the most important thing is that you can walk the talk.

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