You may be asking yourself, “How do I translate my skills to my resume successfully?” In order to do that we must first understand the difference between soft and hard skills.
Hard skills are skills that you have learned, received training on, and in a sense are tangible. These skills are easily translatable on a resume because of that fact. They are things that you may have a certification in, or a software you have experience working with etc.
Soft skills however are less tangible. These are your people skills. The things that you do without necessarily needing training or a certification in. Time management, communication, and being detail oriented are considered soft skills.
How do you know what soft skills you have? How can you present them to potential employers?
When you are trying to update your resume, it is a good idea to look at who you are as a whole. That means to assess the hard and soft skills you have. That may be a little easier said than done. If you need help in trying to figure out what exactly your soft skills are, the easiest way to do that is to ask the people who you work with or volunteer with or you can look at past reviews from work.
Step Two: Understanding how your skills translate
Once you have that overall picture of who you are as well as a good list of the skills (both hard and soft) that you have, I suggest making a two-column list.
One column for the skills and one column for a tangible way you use that in your career or life. In order to complete your two-column list you will need to take each skill and review your work history to see just how you used them in your daily activities while working.
Step Three: Translating these skills to your Resume
Now that your list is complete and you have an idea of how you tangibly used each skill in the work place, you should review the job announcement that you are wanting to apply. Choose 4-6 skills from your list, preferably your stronger skills, that are discussed in the job announcement.
If you don’t see skills in the announcement that you currently have, you may want to hold off on applying to the job and take the time to enhance your skillset. Conversely, if while reviewing the job announcement you notice a skill required that you do have and you left off your list, simply return to your list to add the skills and the tangible use.
Step Four: Putting it all together
Instead of simply listing out all of your skills, that could be a long list in some cases, try to use the list you created to enhance your resume. Review the work history, daily duties, that you have listed out on your resume and use the skills within that explanation. Such as: "With the use of time management and strong communication I successfully managed a team of 50 employees, increasing our sales by 25%, and decreasing employee turnover by 63%." You can add sections such as “Technical Skills” that can list a few technical skills, just be sure not to list out every skill you have. Keep it relevant to the job you are applying to.
Looking at your skillset as a whole will give you not only more confidence, but it will also give you the ability to see yourself and present yourself as a more well-rounded and accomplished individual. Soft and hard skills are equally important when creating your resume. Remember to let yourself shine by successfully incorporating both soft and hard skills into your resume today.
Written by: Phylicia Vallier