The world of work is fast-paced, competitive, and rapidly evolving–and it takes a certain kind of employee to excel in it. Australia’s leading recruiters reveal the five in-demand skills you should develop to stand out from other jobseekers. Read on to learn what these sought-after skills are and why recruiters look for them. Discover how you can effectively show that with these skills and your past experiences, you are what the company needs–no matter what their industry.
Employees who take the lead are sought after by recruiters because they get the job done without being asked. Proactive employees create opportunities for themselves: they volunteer, make suggestions, and plan ahead. They think long term but act on the current situation.
“In order to be agile, companies need less leader-led employees,” says Qamran Somjee, Practice Leader of Digital, Projects & Technology, Davidson Technology. “[They] are looking for staff who are proactive enough to contribute ideas and resilient enough to accept the team’s feedback, even when it is negative,” he explains.
When the pandemic began, employer job satisfaction in Singapore dropped from 87 per cent to 54 per cent. Employers expressed concerns about staff well-being and decreased staff engagement. But ask yourself: during this pandemic, did you raise concerns and offer solutions? Did you find ways to help your colleagues increase productivity while nurturing their well-being? That is the kind of employee recruiters want.
Show your skills: Cite projects or initiatives that you spearheaded, focusing on those that solved company issues or improved a certain process. Discuss what the situation was, what action you took, and what you achieved.
Remote work, social distancing, and the different phases of Singapore’s circuit breaker have drastically changed consumer behaviour. The boom in the e-commerce industry has underscored the importance of a seamless, personalised, and pleasant customer service experience.
The pandemic has shown that whatever business you are in, the customer should always be front and centre. “Empathy is becoming more valued in the workplace. Candidates should stress that they always consider the customer’s perspective,” says Natalie Firt, Co-founder and Co-CEO of Think Talent.
Show your skills: Narrate how you put yourself in the customer’s shoes to understand his or her perspective. Expound on how this allowed you to meet the customer’s needs and resolve his or her issues. You can also discuss how you practice empathy at work. Do you listen actively and treat co-workers from various cultures and backgrounds with respect? How have you helped colleagues who were having problems meeting deadlines or goals? Give concrete examples.
Are you willing to get out of your comfort zone? Do you make an effort to learn digital skills to be more efficient? Are you open to new ways of thinking and doing? Recruiters want candidates who can handle change positively and competently. Being adaptable keeps you learning, lets you stay relevant, and shows your potential to lead.
“Employers want their people to be able to pivot to a new role or area of responsibility as things change and to upskill to remain on top of new trends relevant to their job function or industry,” says Nick Deligiannis, Managing Director of Hays in Australia & New Zealand.
Wang Lei, the Getai singer who became an online fish seller, is a perfect example of someone who embraced change, turning a crisis into an opportunity. He researched his product and learned new technology to sell his goods online. He partnered with Grab drivers, who were also greatly affected by the pandemic, to deliver the incredible number of orders he was receiving daily.
Show your skills: Include previous courses that you have taken to upskill. Maybe you learned how to use a software application to meet client expectations, or you had additional training to boost your leadership or presentation skills. “Using examples allows you to prove your skills while clearly demonstrating to the interviewer how you could add value to their team or department,” says Deligiannis.
Failure can be the best teacher–if you bounce back from it. Doing so requires staying positive and determined: You have to be willing to learn from past mistakes to become smarter and better at what you do.
Recruiters want employees who show resilience despite setbacks and constraints because these kinds of difficulties are present in any company.
“The requirements of today’s workplace are more intense than ever before,” says Andrea McDonald, Director of u&u Recruitment Partners. “Due to the rise in technology, employees are rarely ‘off’, so the ability to manage that pressure and work effectively is essential.”
With all these rapid changes in how we work and run a business, employees have to embrace the trial-and-error approach, facing failure with tenacity.
Show the skills: Talk about how you overcame big changes in your previous job or workplace. Let’s say you were assigned to work from home when the pandemic started. How were you able to cope with the new set-up? Highlight to your potential employer how you managed to fulfil your duties even if working from home might not be the ideal set-up at the moment.
While many businesses now rely on technology to gather data, employees who apply critical-thinking skills to choose important information and interpret data are essential. “Analytical thinking has become a highly sought-after skill,” says Mike Dickson, Director NSW at Six Degrees Executive. “As every function seeks to operate more efficiently and to drive return on investment, the ability to analyse enables informed decision making.”
Show your skills: Describe a situation at work where you gathered and analysed data and how it affected your decisions for the company. “Too often, candidates want to talk about the result, which is meaningless without the situation or the actions they undertook,” says Dickson. You may also tell your potential employer your willingness to undergo training or workshops so you can develop data literacy further.
According to the latest JobStreet Survey Report, 57 per cent of Singaporeans are actively searching and applying for jobs. Make sure you stand out from your fellow candidates with a resume and a job interview that highlights how you have developed and demonstrated these five in-demand skills.
To help you find #JobsThatMatter, update your JobStreet profile to show that you are ready for a job that fills you with passion and purpose. If you can work immediately, add the #WorkNow tag to let employers with urgent recruitment needs contact you quickly. Working during this pandemic may be a challenge, but armed with the right skills and mindset, you can succeed in the industry you wish to pursue.
At JobStreet, we believe in #JobsThatMatter. As a Career Partner, we are committed to helping all jobseekers find passion and purpose in every career choice. And as the number 1 Talent Partner in Asia, we connect employers with the right candidates who truly make a positive and lasting impact on the organisation.
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