Transferable skills are a universal concept that aids everybody in their job search.

Whether you’re a graduate fresh out of university with little work experience or a seasoned veteran who’s worked in countless managerial positions, knowing what are transferable skills and why are they important will help you go far in your quest to find your dream role.

Throughout your life, you will have picked up a broad range of skills that employers want to see. 

More and more employers are prioritising these skills as one of the main focus points in candidates. In fact, studies have shown that 93% of hiring leaders stated soft skills are an “essential” element when making a hiring decision.

In order to land your dream job, you need to make sure you have the correct skills – and it is very likely that you already possess these skills.

Let AvA-V explain What Are Transferable Skills and Why Are They Important?

What Exactly are Transferable Skills?

Transferable skills allow you to succeed in any role as they are skills that are independent of the role itself. Transferable skills, also known as soft skills, aren’t something you can learn from a textbook.

You can begin developing these skills in school, college or university and they don’t require any work experience. 

However, they do require life experience.

Due to the fact that transferable skills aren’t subject/industry related, they can develop through various activities, projects or events.

For example, at university, you may be assigned a project and be required to research and present it to a group. These are two core skills that aren’t industry-specific but still extremely useful in any avenue of life. 

Skills such as research and presentation can be transferred across all sectors and provide you with the required tools to obtain your next role.

What Are Transferable Skills

Why are They Important?

With over 1 million vacancies currently open in the UK, it can be easy to disregard your transferable skills and assume you’ll get the role based on workplace experience alone.

This couldn’t be further from the truth.

Transferable skills are just as attractive to employers as ever, if not more so. For employers, they signal that somebody is more likely to contribute positively to their business.

Let’s compare two scenarios.

A candidate with industry-specific work experience but no transferable skills may understand the technicalities of the role but lack the willingness to adapt to how they work.

Another candidate with no industry-specific experience but many transferable skills will know less about the ins and outs of the role on day one but will be more willing to learn, get stuck in and make a positive contribution.

Despite their lack of knowledge of the sector, an employer may be more likely to pick the second candidate as they can use their existing skillset to mould them into their ideal employee.

Even if you have lots of industry knowledge and many years working in the bank, you can still land your dream role by showing a potential employer that you can use your soft skills to adapt the way you work and show a willingness to embrace change. That is what will make you stand out as a candidate.

Examples of Transferable Skills

  • Presentation, Leadership and Communication

Some of the most valued skills are the ones that involve people. Employees place a high value on these skills as they show that you can work well with others. It also shows that you can take charge and show others the way through your voice and body language. These are all impressive skills that will help you land a job and secure a promotion in the future.

  • Problem-Solving and Critical Thinking

Highly sought-after skills that show your logical thinking, problem-solving and critical thinking are excellent skills to possess. Obstacles appear all the time and companies need employees who can deal with problems effectively. By showing you can assess a situation and find a solution, you’re showing managers that you’re innovative, productive and logical.

  • Time Management and Commitment

Employers seek staff who are reliable and dedicated. Hiring staff who are always late, forgetful and disorganised is one of the most costly mistakes a company can make. Show bosses that you are punctual and pay close attention to detail and you’ll shoot right to the top of their interview lists.

  • Emotional Intelligence

Possessing the ability to perceive and understand feelings is invaluable. Reports suggest that the demand for emotional skills will grow by 26% by 2030, so if you get ahead of the curve now, you’ll solidify your status as a valuable candidate.

Why Are Transferable Skills Important?

What Are Transferable Skills and Why Are They Important - An AvA-V Summary

Transferable skills will go a long way to securing you your ideal role. Whether you’re looking to make your first professional steps or you’ve been in the game for 20+ years, understanding what are transferable skills and why are they important will go a long way in the success of your application.

You must know how to communicate these transferable skills to potential employers. Your transferable skills should be acknowledged at every stage of your application. They should feature in your cover letter, addressed in interview, and mentioned in your CV to help it stand out.

Knowing what makes you a valuable employee and how to communicate that value will help you secure your next role.