Hard skills are the technologies you learn and the credentials you earn. But it’s the soft skills that IT job seekers need more of in the technology jobs of the future. Depending on the job title, you may need leadership or writing skills, patience, or the ability to present to a group. Beyond their industry qualifications, what soft skills should IT job seekers highlight in 2021?
Why Soft Skills Matter in IT
Today’s software and technology projects are collaborative. They are business-focused. They are also strategic. Soft skills like customer service and conflict resolution help IT teams manage the various business stakeholders that use their IT products. Writing skills can help technologists pull job requirements. Working well in a team environment and having the market savvy to help with strategy are all important to today’s modern IT teams. What other soft skills should you highlight on your resume this year?
Communication is key in any IT project today. Far from just knowing a language like Java or Python, verbal and written communication skills are the hallmark of IT.
Problem-solving should be standard for anyone working on complex hardware or software builds. But problem-solving skills go beyond knowing where to place a curly bracket or how to connect to an API. Recruiters look for tenacity and the ability to follow through to overcome unexpected challenges.
Staying organized is critical to managing a workload. While developers have Agile and Waterfall methodologies and Kanban boards to visually manage their work, it is your ability to handle the pressure of multiple tasks and deadlines that are important to employers.
Resilience helps you overcome adversity. Employers look for employees that can push past disappointment with grace while keeping their eyes on the prize.
Public speaking skills are critical whether you are a UX Designer or a Data Analyst. Far from being just a design on a page or numbers on a spreadsheet, many IT jobs require an ability to speak to a room of people to explain complex projects or to simplify those projects so that the various stakeholders can understand.
Interpersonal skills that allow you to communicate and collaborate well with other members of the team will mark you as a highly desirable job candidate that any employer should be interested in.
Leadership and management skills are critical for advancing in your career. Most employers are highly interested in candidates that exhibit these skills.
Networking skills can lead you to your next job. But networking can also help you make connections in other departments in an organization which will help when it’s time to understand the business case for a particular piece of software.
Negotiation skills are the opposite of being argumentative. These soft skills allow you to participate in an intelligent give and take between two people that can help build a stronger collaboration in the long run.
Finally, being proactive shows organized thought, and it can help you stay one step ahead of a potential problem on an IT build. Or, it can give you the ability to plan out your career. Staying proactive means you’re a good manager of your life and you have the foresight to plan when so many other disorganized thinkers simply react to what’s going on around them.
Today’s modern IT teams need these and other soft skills to work in the field. If you’re an IT professional whose educational credentials and experience meld with strong soft skills, it’s highly likely you are in-demand for most employers. Talk with A.C.Coy about the opportunities out there and start your New Year off on the right track.