A new year can be a great opportunity to make a change, take on a new challenge or expand your horizons. In terms of employment, this could mean entering a new industry or even embarking on a whole new career. But in a competitive job market, how can you maximise your chances of success?
How about by focusing on the skills that companies are looking for? Over the last few years, LinkedIn has tracked the skills that companies need the most on an annual basis and the company recently released its findings for 2019.. Using data gathered through their website on skills that are in high demand compared to their supply, the LinkedIn team narrowed down an estimated 50,000 skills to a list of the 30 that are most in-demand (5 ‘soft’ and 25 ‘hard’).
Find out what skills made the list below…
The soft skills
The soft skills that companies are looking for tend to remain fairly consistent year-on-year, although as our world becomes increasingly digital, their importance is growing.
1) Creativity. While computers and artificial intelligence can do alot of things, creativity remains a prized human trait.
2) Persuasion. Few products sell themeselves. They rely on companies to hire employees with the ability to persuade consumers to make a purchase.
3) Collaboration. Teamwork is the heart of any good business and increasingly cutting-edge projects require increasingly skilled team players.
4) Adaptability. Our modern world is changing rapidly, and those who can effectively adapt to its new environments, techniques and technologies will thrive.
5) Time management: Being able to manage your time effectively is a skill that will be beneficial throughout your career.
The hard skills
Unsurprising, the list is dominated by skills relating to technology and the digital arena, but a few more traditional ones have also slipped in:
1) Cloud computing. Everything seems to be connected to a cloud these days, which means that related skills are particularly attractive to employers.
2) Artificial intelligence. From Alexa to Siri, AI has become firmly imbedded in our lives and that trend looks likely to continue.
3) Analytical reasoning. There’s a lot of data out there. The ability to synthesise that data and use it to make informed decisions is highly valued by companies.
4) People management. Being able to manage people and get the best out of them is an old skill, but an important one.
5) User experience (UX) design. With consumer expectations and the level of competition growing, those who can enhance user satisfaction with a product are in high demand.
6) Mobile application development. Apps continue to be a booming modern business in our increasingly technological world.
7) Video production. The video production industry is thriving and companies are on the lookout for employees with knowledge of the latest techniques.
8) Sales leadership. Sales bring in profits, making this skill truly essential for any commercial company.
9) Translation. Thanks to technology, companies can easily reach audiences around the world. Communicating effectively with them, though, requires the skills of a translator.
10) Audio production. The rising popularity of podcasts, audiobooks and other forms of auditory communication has seen a rising demand for those who can produce them.
11) Natural language processing (NLP). While computers are growing more sophisticated, they still need help understanding human languages. That’s where NLP skills come in.
12) Scientific computing. If you can efficiently solve problems involving large amounts of data, then companies will welcome you with open arms.
13) Game development. Gaming has become a much more mainstream industry over the last few decades, creating new opportunities.
14) Social media marketing. As long as social media continues to be a popular way for companies to reach their audiences, those with related skills will continue to be in demand.
15) Animation. The popularity of videos and the resurgence of GIFs has brought animation skills into the top 25 list.
16) Business analysis. Analysts are becoming increasingly valuable to companies that are looking to improve their systems and boost their profits.
17) Journalism. More and more companies are looking for skilled writers who can craft compelling content.
18) Digital marketing. The rise of digital has been accompanied by the rise of digital marketing – and a need for related skills.
19) Industrial design. Elegant, impactful and practical designs have been in demand for decades.
20) Competitive strategies. In the face of growing competition, companies need those who can help them stay ahead of their rivals.
21) Customer service systems. A number of high-profile customer service disasters in 2018 have reinforced the importance of a strong customer-facing system.
22) Software testing. There’s nothing worse for a company than releasing a new product that’s full of bugs. Enter the software tester!
23) Data science. The shear volume of information that’s available today and the need to interpret it has led to skills such as data science making this list.
24) Computer graphics. Modern consumers expect cutting-edge computer graphics wherever they look, making employees with these skills a valuable asset to any employer.
25) Corporate communications. As with customer service systems, 2018’s high-profile PR disasters have shown how important it is for companies to have employees that can communicate effectively.