During this time of massive unemployment due to the coronavirus, it is critical to showcase your skills and experience on your résumé and during interviews. It is also important to spend time building your relevant skills during your time away from work. Today we are looking at ways to do this as well as how to highlight them on your résumé. 

writing on a piece of paper

What Are Relevant Skills? 

Before you begin your career development or adding sections to your résumé, you will want to closely examine what relevant skills are and which you can highlight during your next interview. 

Relevant skills can include: problem solving, critical thinking, communication, creativity, teamwork, emotional intelligence, IT skills, project management, attention to detail, data analysis, negotiation, foreign language, writing, coding, and computer software and application knowledge. 

Recruiters want to see that candidates have practical experience as well as some of these skills that will help while in the position being filled. Therefore, during any time away from the workforce, potential candidates should spend time building some of these skills. 

image of words with new skills

How Do I Build Skills? 

On-the-job training and attending industry-specific conferences are traditionally helpful ways to build relevant skills. Unfortunately, given this current economy and the state of the global pandemic, these two methods are not available for many people looking for work. 

Reading about the industry you are hoping to enter is a great idea, even if you are quarantined at home. The Muse online states that, “To start, dedicate 30 minutes a day to learning about your industry from top thought leaders. When reading books, use the appendix and notes to see where the author got his information and how he is researching and learning in his field. You can also follow industry experts on LinkedIn or Twitter to see the content they are sharing, the companies they follow, or groups they are in. “

In addition to consuming as much information as possible about the industry, taking a class or two online can also be helpful to build skills. Check out college and universities in your area to determine what online classes they are offering and if you can audit the class for free. Along with taking a class, you may want to check out certifications that are being offered online as well. Google and Apple offer many that can help build your technical expertise. 

Attend virtual meetups where you can learn from other professionals in the field what skills are highly sought after. Check out Meetup or Eventbrite, to find company-sponsored events in your area and industry, or look into nearby co-working spaces, which also tend to host functions regularly. Many of these events are being held remotely at this point so you can observe and take part from the safety of your own home. 

Read, take online classes, seek out certifications, and attend meetups to determine what skills you want to develop during this unusual employment time period and get going on building yours! 

For more resources on building your skills, check out our resources pages at North Shore Career Center and MassHire North Shore