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Transferable Skills

‘Transferable skills’ are often mentioned as a way to improve your job prospects.

Here are ten top tips that explain what they are and how they can be used to help you step into work…

  1. Transferable skills are skills that you have learnt in other parts of your life. You may have learnt skills from other jobs, parenting, hobbies, or sports activities which could be useful to you in a new job. For example, being part of a football team requires team work, leadership skills, taking on responsibility, making a commitment to train, and being able to deal with constantly changing situations. These are just the kind of traits that employers are looking for!
     
  2. Transferable skills can be divided into a broad range of skill areas, including: communication, teamwork, leadership, initiative, problem solving, flexibility and adaptability, self-awareness, commitment and motivation, and interpersonal skills
     
  3. You can take the opportunity to refer to your transferable skills in your CV, in a cover letter, during an interview, or in an application form
     
  4. Transferable skills can be extremely useful if applying for a job in a different career to what you have been doing previously. This is often a challenging move, but transferable skills are important in showing any potential employer that you have the ability to be flexible and adapt to a new career
     
  5. Whether changing career, going for a new job in the same field, or applying for your first job, make sure that the transferable skills you talk about are relevant to the application criteria. Make sure you fit your application to the job role and person specification of each job you apply for
     
  6. As with any stage of the application process, be it writing your CV, your covering letter, or even interview practice, you need to do your research so that you everything you present to the employer is relevant
     
  7. To help identify what skills you currently have, take a moment to go through your week and think about all the things you do. Then make a note of all the skills you have used to complete these tasks
     
  8. Bear in mind that you need to be able to prove that you have the transferable skills that you say you do in your CV. Employers may ask you for examples at interview
     
  9. Transferable skills can be a great help if you don’t have much experience of work. Remember that job experience is not the only thing employers are looking for, they need to know that any candidate is a well-rounded individual
     
  10. As with writing a CV, don’t be afraid to ask for help and feedback from employment services, friends or family. Often, extra feedback will highlight abilities you didn’t even know you had!