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7 Soft Skills to Put on Resume that Employers Want to See

While employers across all industries look for candidates with technical skills and subject-matter expertise, those aren’t the only types of skills they value.

Employers also want to see noteworthy transferable skills — otherwise known as soft skills. 

And the reason is simple. 

Soft skills help employees build resilience and agility. From leadership skills to critical thinking, transferable skills help employees solve problems, resolve conflicts, and strategize new possibilities. This makes them an incredible asset to just about any company.

Let’s take a closer look at some soft skills you should consider adding to your resume to position yourself as a top-talent candidate. 

1. Industry specific soft skills 

Include relevant skills employers in your specific industry value. 

For instance …

Travel nursing: Employers from compact nursing states look for skills such as adaptability, empathy, teamwork, and communication.

Here’s a look at an Indeed travel nurse job posting that highlights empathy as a required soft skill:

Teaching: Educational organizations look for employees with skills such as creativity, flexibility, and the ability to tailor educational experiences. 

Project management industry: Lead project managers look for team members with pristine time management skills, organizational skills, and conflict resolution abilities.

Tourism: Tour guide operators look for employees with strong people skills, language skills, and storytelling skills. 

Look how travelers referenced the impact their tour guides’ storytelling skills had on their WWII tours in Normandy:

(Image Source)

Consulting industry: Consultancy firms value consultants who display active listening skills, interpersonal skills, and business analysis skills. 

For a comprehensive list of skills, conduct research to uncover the standards in your specific industry. 

You might also consider conducting informational interviews with people who have landed the role you’re aspiring to secure. They can share their firsthand experiences and help you pinpoint the most valuable skills employers in your industry are looking for.

2. Soft skills learned from internships and previous jobs

Be specific about the skills you’ve acquired from relevant internships or previous job experiences. 

The less training you have to go through — and the more applicable your experience is — the more admirable your resume will be. 

In fact, according to NACE’s Job Outlook 2024 report, potential employers cite internship experience as the main deciding factor when choosing between two qualified candidates for a job opening. NACE recommends highlighting both the internship experience you’ve gained with an employer’s organization and within the industry to catch an employer’s eye.

For instance, you may have learned how to pivot during crises while working with a startup company. You might also have learned online sales skills simply by being in the SaaS industry. 

Go into detail about how the skills you’ve acquired helped you solve a major problem or achieve success at work. This helps potential employers envision how you apply the soft skills you’ve learned from previous roles.

3. Problem-solving skills

Highlight your problem-solving abilities to show potential employers how agile you can be during challenging situations at work. 

Nearly 90% of employers value problem-solving as a critical skill when searching for suitable employees.

No matter what industry you’re in, unexpected situations can come up, and knowing how to pivot and find a solution is paramount to your success — and the organization you work for.

Imagine running an automated contextual ad campaign, only to find out your programmatic ads showed up next to harmful content. After conducting research, you learn there’s an AI tool you can use that automatically scans content against stringent brand safety and suitability metrics before placing ads. 

To “solve the problem,” you set up future ads using this tool. You also get to discuss with your public relations team how to correct any potential brand harm that occurred after the ad.

In this example, you didn’t accept defeat. You went above and beyond to prevent ads from showing up in inappropriate contexts. You also quickly worked to protect the company from a negative brand reputation after a mistake occurred.

This way of approaching conflict shows employers they can rely on you to do what’s best for the organization — especially when problems arise.

4. Strong teamwork skills 

Include your ability to work in teams, adapt to team norms, and communicate effectively with co-workers. 

While being able to carry your own weight is vital, working well with others is also a sought-after skill. In most organizations, being able to coexist with other team members and work toward a common goal is necessary for the company’s success. 

Imagine a project management team with employees who miscommunicate, show signs of disrespect, or ghost team members. Getting deliverables complete would be a complete nightmare. 

On the flip side, imagine a project management team without silos that values one another’s expertise and collaborates seamlessly to get work done. There’s no limit to what a team that’s in sync can accomplish.

5. Flexibility/adaptability

Provide concrete examples of how you’ve demonstrated flexibility and adaptability in various contexts. This positions you as a valuable asset to any organization seeking resilient, agile, and forward-thinking professionals.

For instance, you might share how you successfully transitioned to new roles within an organization. This demonstrates your ability to quickly acclimate to different responsibilities and excel in unfamiliar territory.

You could also share examples of times when you embraced learning new technologies or methodologies. This illustrates your openness to growth and your proactive approach to staying current in your field.

Showcasing your capacity to pivot quickly in response to shifting priorities is particularly compelling to potential employers. Whether you’ve faced sudden changes in project scope, tight deadlines, or unexpected challenges, highlighting your ability to remain calm under pressure and adapt your approach accordingly demonstrates your resilience and resourcefulness.

Go the extra mile by emphasizing your willingness to take on new challenges and step outside your comfort zone. 

Whether it’s volunteering for cross-functional projects or spearheading initiatives outside of your usual scope of work, these experiences showcase your readiness to embrace change and contribute to the organization’s success.

6. Written and verbal communication skills

Highlight written and verbal communication skills on your resume to show employers you can convey ideas clearly, foster connections with colleagues and stakeholders, and drive meaningful outcomes.

For instance, illustrate your ability to craft clear, concise, and engaging written content. That might be drafting emails, reports, or proposals. Include a link to a portfolio so they can see how your writing contributes to achieving project milestones, gaining stakeholder buy-in, or advancing organizational initiatives.

Underscore your verbal communication skills by sharing experiences where you’ve excelled in delivering presentations, leading meetings, or participating in collaborative brainstorming sessions. 

Don’t forget to include all of the languages you speak, too. Multilingualism is a valuable asset, particularly in global or multicultural workplaces, where effective communication across language barriers is essential for success.

7. Analytical skills

Share how you gather, analyze, and interpret data to make informed decisions and solve complex problems at work.

Provide examples of projects or tasks where you were required to gather information from various sources, analyze it systematically, and draw meaningful insights. That might’ve included conducting market research, analyzing financial data, or interpreting performance metrics.

Highlight your critical thinking skills, too. Employers look for team members who can evaluate information objectively, identify patterns or trends, and generate innovative solutions to challenges. Discuss instances where you’ve applied critical thinking to solve problems, make recommendations, or improve processes within your organization.

Go the extra mile by sharing concrete examples of how your analytical skills have contributed to tangible outcomes. 

That might’ve been identifying cost-saving opportunities, optimizing processes to improve efficiency, or driving revenue growth through data-driven strategies. Highlighting the impact of your analytical abilities reinforces your value as a strategic thinker and problem solver.

Wrap up 

While technical expertise and qualifications are undoubtedly essential, it’s often soft skills that set exceptional candidates apart in a competitive job market. 

Employers value soft skills because they contribute to an agile work environment, effective collaboration, and overall productivity.

Soft skills such as communication, teamwork, adaptability, and problem-solving aren’t just desirable — they’re increasingly essential in navigating challenges at work. 

Strong communication skills foster understanding, build relationships, and drive positive outcomes.

Effective teamwork supports collaboration, innovation, and shared success. Adaptability helps teams thrive in dynamic environments, embrace change, and seize opportunities for growth. And problem-solving skills help employees identify challenges, develop creative solutions, and drive continuous improvement.

Employers recognize that individuals with strong soft skills aren’t only better equipped to navigate challenges — but are also more likely to contribute positively to organizational culture and success. 

The bottom line?
Whether it’s fostering a collaborative team environment, driving innovation, or delivering exceptional customer experiences, soft skills play a fundamental role in achieving organizational goals and driving sustainable growth.

Author Bio:

Jeremy is co-founder & CEO at uSERP, a digital PR and SEO agency working with brands like Monday, ActiveCampaign, Hotjar, and more. He also buys and builds SaaS companies like and writes for publications like Entrepreneur and Search Engine Journal.

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