Skills. Tech jobs tend to require a particular set of them. And when a perspective employer is looking for specific on-paper proficiencies, you can't simply Liam Niessan your way out of such situations.
However, for job seekers who have the required education but are lacking a year or less of the required experience, there are transferable soft skills that transcend jobs, departments and industries. And could still position a candidate as the right fit.
Below is a list of transferable traits that, combined with the required education and skills, can help candidates overcome minor experience gaps.
1. Analytical proficiencies
Being able to look at data and draw conclusions from the numbers, whether its monitoring web traffic to website performance, is a primary skill for IT professionals. Entire careers revolve around these solutions, and these kinds of skills deal with your ability to assess a situation and gather more information if needed. Mention any tools that directly relate to research and analysis like Microsoft Excel or Google Analytics.
Describe any experience with a client where you analyzed any data sets, compiled reports or wrote any content for a tech site. Remember a client could still be a friend, family member or acquaintance.
2. Ability to multi-task
Being able to prioritize multiple tasks and quickly adapt to managing assignments and budgets is an important requirement in tech. There are often bug fixes and updates that need to be made-- some of which could be crucial to a project's success. Knowing which task to prioritize is an impressive skill to have.
Mention any project management and/or productivity tools you’ve used like Asana, Basecamp, Workfront, Freshdesk, etc. Highlight any experience where you’ve taken on a leadership role in project/team management where you’ve handled multiple tasks at once.
3. Ability to innovate and problem solve (creatively)
Taking a creative approach to problem solving demonstrates that you're always looking for new ways to solve problems before they even happen. Highlighting creative skills where you were able to troubleshoot issues “outside the box” in ways in which others have not thought of brings a fresh perspective to any project or team. Highlight ideas you’ve implemented in previous roles.
List any troubleshooting solutions you’ve implemented that no one else brought forward.
4. Ability to thrive within the organization's environment
Regardless of the positions you’ve held, no one wants to work with someone who can't work well with others, communicate or adapt to workplace scenarios. Do you thrive within competitive environments, need little direction or work well within group atmospheres?
How to demonstrate on resume:
• If remote working is an option, highlight any communication tools you’ve used.
• List collaborative aspects of your roles and the outcome of great team work.
• Use examples of goals achieved.
5. Process planning and organizing
Are you “that person” with a detailed desk calendar, who plans the quarter before it starts? Do you use ready-to-go templates and checklists? You want to demonstrate that you’re organized and professional in thought, communication and workflow.
- Highlight specific organizational tools you use like the ones above, and list any management processes you’ve used like Scrum. As a contingent worker, highlight your project workflow
Remember, it's important to keep your employment expectations in check in these transferable skills situations. A new grad will succumb to application fatigue very quickly if applying to managerial roles.
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