When writing your resume for a job, adding your hard skills is one of the most crucial things to consider. Since you are applying for a particular niche, you must know the relevant hard skills to let employers know you are the right candidate. Your resume designates a section for it—alongside soft skills, which are just as crucial. Thus, you need to learn how to strategically list your hard skills for resume.
What are hard skills?
Hard skills refer to the necessary abilities you need in performing the job. These abilities are primarily learned from previous experience, special training, education, and more. To put it simply, hard skills are technical skills or a broad set of expertise that will help you fulfill your duties. It is a crucial element of a job application as it is how recruiters will know how you fit the job. This implies that every applicant must understand how to list hard skills for resume properly.
Hard skills vs. soft skills
Both hard skills and soft skills are essential parts of writing the skill section of your resume. While these two are not necessarily separated in the skill section, it is necessary that you know their difference and how you can highlight them.
Soft skills are personal habits and traits that influence how you handle tasks, deal with workmates, and more. On the other hand, hard skills are technical knowledge necessary to complete the job. They are very specific to the job or industry.
The hard skills for resume
Here are the different types and examples of hard skills that you may include in your resume depending on your field:
1. Technical skills
Technical skills are the knowledge and expertise in the IT, product engineering, and Science field. These skills primarily refer to the specializations in software and various types of equipment.
Check out this list of technical skills you can add to your resume:
- STEM skills
- CRM platforms
- Troubleshooting workflow development
- Lean manufacturing
2. Computer skills
There are different computer skills specializing in software and hardware. Computer skills are considered to be among the most sought-after skills in the workplace in this digitally inclined era. Almost any industry uses computers, making possessing computer skills a necessity in most jobs.
Below are some essential computer skills that give you an edge in your job application:
- MS Excel
- MS Word
- MS Outlook
- MS PowerPoint
- MS Access
- MS OneNote
- Google Drive
- Google Suite
- Email management
- Database management
- Social media
- Data entry
- Enterprise systems
3. Analytical skills
Analytical skills refer to abilities used in gathering, analyzing, deciphering, and presenting data. These skills are necessary for primarily data-driven jobs. Possessing these will give you an advantage to highly analytical roles like data analyst, statistician, project manager, and more.
Here are some analytical skills you can list in your resume:
- Data mining
- Data presentation
- Resource management
- Data and metrics interpreting
- Data engineering
4. Marketing skills
Marketing skills are hard skills specializing in sales and advertising. These encompass both technical and digital skills that are in demand in today’s digitally fueled market. These are skills that deal with different advertising media, e-commerce, and product management.
Here are some marketing skills you can add to your resume when applying for a specific marketing role:
- SEO Power Suite
- Social Media marketing
- Content writing
- Email marketing
- Data visualization
- Facebook ads
- Funnel management
- Content creation
- Campaign creation
5. Project Management
Project management is a hard skill that most industries vie for a manager. This is a valuable skill for management roles in ensuring efficiency in business operations and task delegation.
Here are some project management skills you should list in your resume to stand out:
- PMP certification
- Agile methodologies like Scrum
- Project management software like Trello
- Strategic planning
- Risk management
- Project lifecycle management
- Performance tracking
- Financial modeling
6. Accounting skills
Many jobs require accounting knowledge in recording and processing business transactions. These skills are essential not just for accountants but also for sales professionals.
Here are some accounting skills that you may add to your resume:
- MS Excel
- IBM Cognos analytics
- MS Visual Basic
- Big data analysis
7. Writing skills
Writing is a hard skill that’s valuable to the marketing industry and internal business communication. It’s a skill that universally fits into any sector.
Here are some writing skills you can include in your resume:
- Email writing
- Grant writing
- SEO content and copywriting
- Report writing
8. Design skills
Design is one of the in-demand skills in the job market right now. Be it in graphics or back-end development of a website, design is a crucial element to consider. In applying for a role that handles design, you need to know precisely what hard skills to include in your resume. Here are some:
- UX/UI design
- Data visualization
- Corel Draw
- Color theory
- Print design
How to highlight hard skills for resume
Since your resume is the first point of contact your potential employer sees, you need to ensure you highlight them correctly. After all, it only takes about five to six seconds for a recruiter to scan and evaluate a resume. Thus, you must understand how proper listing impacts your job success.
Here are some quick pointers for the effective listing of hard skills for resume:
Align your hard skills to the job description.
To let employers know that you possess the skills they are looking for, check the job description and curate the skills mentioned. You don’t necessarily need to copy what the job posting says—that’s lazy and won’t impress recruiters. Instead, think of your most suitable skills that match the job requirements and add them to your resume.
Place your skills section at the upper part of your resume.
After your name, contact details, and resume summary, insert your skills section. This should come before your work history details. This way, it’s easier for recruiters to scan your abilities that match the job requirements.
Emphasize your hard skills in your work experience details.
Your work history sheds light on some of the outstanding accomplishments you achieved in your previous jobs. This is the perfect opportunity to highlight how you utilized the hard skills you previously mentioned in your resume. By doing this, you are proving to the recruiter that you have a solid background in the said hard skills.
These are the set of hard skills you may include on your resume. Follow the tips given in highlighting them to increase your chance of landing an interview. For more powerful resume tips, you may check out this comprehensive course about writing compelling resumes: Resume Writing Skills.
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