The Top 10 Skills To Put On A Resume In 2024, From Research

 Are you still listing "Microsoft Office proficiency," "dynamic team player," or "hard worker" on your resume?

If you've caught yourself agreeing with the above statement, then, chances are, your resume is out of date. That may come as shocking news, but here's what's even more shocking:

Although there are close to nine million job openings in the United States, there are an estimated 6.3 million unemployed, which means there are more jobs than workers—a ratio of 1.4. With such a vast number of opportunities available, it seems incredulous that so many are still out of work, but this can be explained by a multitude of factors, one major factor being the costly skills gap.

Employers, desirous of filling a position, are struggling to hire for their role because the labor market—the job applicants for the position—do not have the required skills, or worst of all, they actually do possess these competencies but fail to effectively demonstrate or make reference to them within their resume and application. Both sides lose in the process, inflation continues to rise, and the situation for job seekers continues to spiral.

It's evident that the workforce is evolving; and so is the skills demand.

In consideration of this, the World Economic Forum compiled a list of core skills on the rise, gathered from their extensive research survey conducted in 2023. These skills were specifically cited by employers as increasing in priority. This means that if you include these—and examples of where and how you've displayed them, while quantifying your achievements—on your resume, you gain a striking advantage.

The top 10 skills highlighted, which you can put on your resume, are:

1. Creative Thinking

Employers need workers who are willing to think outside the box and are confident enough to voice their ideas and suggestions. While presently, this may not always be welcomed and well received, there appears to be an ongoing shift in leaders who are recognizing the importance of emotional intelligence, and providing safe open spaces for workers to challenge the status quo and input their perspectives. As this shift continues, your creativity will be of high value in the workplace and can be instrumental in ensuring cost-effective and time-efficient solutions, regardless of your specific role.

2. Analytical Thinking

Are you confident with analyzing vast amounts of data from various sources analyzing them to arrive at your own conclusions and make data-driven decisions? If you've applied this skill in previous roles, include examples of this on your resume. What's more, if you've used any specific data analysis tools or have any certifications relating to this skill, you might be able to score more points with the hiring manager.

3. Technological Literacy

Technological literacy refers to the understanding and practical usage of digital tools in an ethical manner. While of course, traditional Microsoft Office applications that are commonly used such as Word and PowerPoint have their place, gaining an advanced understanding of Excel, Power BI, or other cutting-edge or more recent tools including Microsoft's own Copilot, can help you stand out as a relevant candidate and makes you more of an attractive catch.

4. Curiosity And Lifelong Learning

An attitude of curiosity is very much needed in workers today, because without a continuous desire for lifelong learning, your skill set will become stale and you will be unable to adapt effectively. This means you will hold less value to employers and will be less likely to be promoted or given a pay raise. Curiosity and lifelong learning are elements of the growth mindset, and help you to achieve your full potential.

5. Resilience, Flexibility And Agility

Resilience and flexibility came fifth on the World Economic Forum's list, and LinkedIn's 2024 Most In-Demand Skills report showcased how adaptability (agility) is the "skill of the moment" for 2024, reiterating how valuable this skill set is. Employers want to see examples of times you've effectively navigated change and persevered through difficulties. What steps did you take to be resilient and agile in your work practices?

6. Systems Thinking

Systems thinking is a unique way to approach problem-solving by assessing how different problems have relationships to each other as part of a wider, interrelated system. It's a holistic approach that considers interdependencies and can be useful in roles such as project management, healthcare, retail, manufacturing, change management, and leadership in large organizational structures.

7. AI And Big Data

An understanding of AI (artificial intelligence), large language models, and big data (large, complex data sets) can help enable employers to tackle one of their biggest challenges for the year ahead—implementing AI within their workflows and products.

8. Motivation And Self-Awareness

Motivation and self-awareness are critical skills for remote and hybrid workers, as you will need to have sufficient drive to manage your workload and your time management. You also need to be self-aware enough to recognize where your performance could improve and what steps you can take to cooperate with your employer and enable high-performance levels.

Perhaps you might not explicitly mention these skills in your resume, but you could allude to specific examples of where you took the initiative through your own self-awareness to undertake training or upskilling. Or you might mention how you manage your workload and prioritize tasks and meetings efficiently.

9. Talent Management

Considering the widening labor and skills gap in 2024, it's no wonder that employers are seeking more professionals with expertise in talent management—not only talent attraction and recruitment, but in talent development, performance management, and continuous training. This is not a skill set restricted to human resources professionals alone. If you want to work in leadership or management, you should, at least broadly, have talent management under your belt.

10. Service Orientation And Customer Service

Coming in at 10th in The World Economic Forum's list of skills on the rise, customer service remains a key concern and priority for employers. Artificial intelligence can replace many of the most basic front-facing customer service roles such as answering FAQs and resolving general inquiries. But building relationships with customers, particularly at the B2B level, remains a skill that robots cannot perform, as this requires deeper levels of understanding, trust, and human expertise.

To adapt to industry and global workplace shifts, employers need professionals like you who are nimble to significant market changes, have an attitude of continuous learning, and improve their skills regularly to stay on trend, so they can be more efficient and productive. They won't know if you have these skills or not unless you show them. Don't take it for granted that you can demonstrate these skills in your interview. Without adequate mention of them at the screening stage, there may be no interview at all.

Still, considering whether or not to include "Dynamic team player" as a skill on your resume?

Better replace it with one of these skills instead.

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