Hard skills are needed by employers from employee to do their jobs, thus, they are usually the most asked for skills in job descriptions and its particularly what they look out for in resumes.
Consequently, in most jobs, to adequately carry out and advance your career as an immigrant seeking work in Canada, you require some of the popular hard skills.
This article will discuss and elaborate on everything hard skills, give you good examples of some popular hard skills in addition to offering important advice on how to designate your skills properly on your resume.
Table of Contents
What are Hard Skills?
Hard skills are a category of skill sets that is both of technical knowledge and training, which are often important requirements for landing a jobrequirements for landing a job.
Moreover, these skills are necessary expertise needed by an individual to qualify for Key Job Industries for Immigrants in Canada. Therefore, they are job-specific and are usually criteria in job postings and job descriptions.
In addition, hard skills are gotten from formal education and training courses from colleges, short-term training classes, apprenticeships, online courses, and certification programs, and likewise on-the-job trainings.
Similarly, these kinds of skills are learned, therefore can be defined, evaluated, and measured. They are the look-out-for during the hiring process and interviews to compare applicants for employment.
Thus, in certain occupations, employers test their candidates for popular hard skills to ensure they are able to do what their resume claims they can do.
Consequently, upon landing that job, your employer can decide to evaluate your hard skills again, for consideration for a possible promotion or a transfer.
The following are different expressions
- If you have worked in a food service or retail outlet, it is likely that you would know how to use a point-of-sale system to payments.
- Mechanics who know how to use specialized equipment to diagnose problems with any kind of vehicle.
- Knowing a foreign language and able to speak fluently is another good hard skill.
- A programmer who has extensive understanding of programming languages and able to create customized software or apps.
- An architect good with the use of drafting software.
In certainty, almost every type of job has technical skills specific to that business sector. Likewise, other occupations require certifications, licensing or proficiency tests. For instance, nurses in Canada must take professional certification exams after their post-secondary school degree and also register with the province or territory.
Similarly, some other sectors are big on tests and trainings, in addition, some employers sign their employees up for certain technical on the job skills.
Types and examples of hard skills
Listed below are some very important in-demand popular hard skills, in addition to useful examples:
Some types of communication skills are considered hard skills, these will include certain skills like:
- speaking more than one language fluently
- transcription and typing
- social media
- word processing
Computer skills are very important hard skills that every employee need; therefore, understanding of computers to perform the jobs effectively is what most employers expect. Similarly, some jobs ask for in-depth understanding of several hard skills related to high level knowledge of computer, these including skills like:
- pivot tables
- web development and web architecture frameworks
- Microsoft Office, including Word, Outlook, Excel, PowerPoint, Publisher and Access
- content management systems (CMS)
- Adobe software suite
- iOS and Android app development
- network security
Data analysis skills are of use in numerous occupations as hard skills, some of those occupations include the following:
- statistical analysis
- data engineering
- mining data
- database management
- data visualization
- web analytics
Below are some of the most in-demand poplar hard skills in the marketing occupation
- Google analytics
- search engine optimization (SEO)
- email marketing
- search engine marketing (SEM)
- campaign management
- project management
To be successful as a designer you need a number of hard skills, which are up to date and align with current technology used in the design industry. However, the common popular hard skills sort by employers for design occupations includes the following:
- user experience (UX) or user interface (UI) design
- digital design
- photo editing
- software revision control systems
Top Popular Hard Skills Needed by Employers in the Canada
Report from LinkedIn state that the following set of popular hard skills as those that are in greatest demand since 2020
- Artificial Intelligence
- UX Design
- Cloud Computing
- Analytical Reasoning
- Scientific Computing
- Business Analysis
- Affiliate Marketing
- Video Production
Below are examples of the hard skills in need in different occupations
- Automotive Technology
- Banking Operations
- Database Management
- Java Script
- Manufacturing Technology
- Marketing Research
- Medical Diagnosis
- Pharmaceutical Coding
- Python Programming
- Project Management
- Proposal Writing
- Social Media Marketing
- Technical Writing
- Word Processing
Hard Skills Vs Soft Skills
In contrast to hard skills, there are also soft skills which are important look-outs to employers and in job descriptions, therefore, these skills are just as important as hard skills because they have to do with the individuals capacity to handle both the job, colleagues and customers on a relational level.
Thus, we are also going to look at what soft skills are in comparison to hard skills.
What are soft skills?
Soft skillsSoft skills are defined as inherent or learnt habits and characters that determine how individuals carry out work by themselves and with others. As a result, most employers seek workers who can communicate and relate with others effectively, either in person or by writing.
In addition, some seek organized, trustworthy and creative people who are good listeners and team players.
Additionally, soft skills are important addition to your resume for an effective job search and help in building your career.
Meanwhile, hard skills are used to perform technical jobs, on the other hand, soft skills are used to create positive, relational, functional and efficient working environment.
Therefore, employers are often in the look-out for applicants who possess a balanced combination of applicable soft and hard skills whose experience can be classified as high-skilled and low-skilled when applying to the CEC in Canada. However, based on the needs of the company and the job requirements, employers designate soft and hard skills requirements differently.
In addition, while some hard skills take years of education and training, other types of soft skills, however, are even more difficult to develop.
For instance, training someone with no natural leadership ability whatsoever, for a leadership position can be very challenging. Therefore, most employers prefer to hire applicants with soft skills that are willing to learn and develop the necessary hard skills for the job.
Different Types of soft skills and Examples
The following are some important soft skills, in addition, with useful examples
Firstly, in the ranking of soft skills, is the ability to communicate properly and efficiently as an important skill that ensures effective teamwork, help the work environment to be lively and positive, in addition to being able to solve and negotiate issues.
Similarly, communication plays a prominent role in careers like; human resources, management, sales, leadership, marketing and other positions where it’s a must to relate closely with people. Common soft communication skills are:
- public speaking
- giving constructive feedback
- delegating tasks
- conflicts resolution
Additionally, soft skills are personality traits and attributes that affect interpersonal interactions, relationships and productivity. Although, different they are just as important as hard skills in the work place.
Thus, the soft skills listed below are rated by LinkedIn as most valued in the workplace
- Emotional Intelligence
Just as the workplace and intricacies of business and organizations continue to evolve, applicants with hybrid skills, that is those with a good blend of both hard skills and soft skills are becoming increasingly valuable due to their efficiency. Therefore, employers prioritize such applicants in filling positions because they have the flexibility that enables them add value to the organization and to keep evolving.
Why Skills are important in the Canadian Workplace
Hard skills and soft skills are equally valuable in the workplace, however, the best skills employers look out for often depends on what the employer desires for a specific position.
Consequently, a difference between hard skills and soft skills is that hard skills can be taught in specific, concrete steps. Therefore, from an instructor’s or a manager’s point of view, training a person on how to code is a more defined process compare to teaching a person to listen and communicate effectively.
Likewise, soft skills entails emotional intelligence and empathy, thus, they are more difficult and complicated to teach to a student.
Nevertheless, both hard and soft skills are very valuable to career progress. Therefore, having both, enable you to do your job confidently and professionally in the real world.
What to do when preparing your resume?
During job hunting, it is advised that you include the skills the employer is searching for in your resume and applications. The types of skills “hard and soft” are usually listed in the requirements section of job posts and ads.
Highlight your Skills to Qualify You for the Job
Begin by highlighting the skills you have which are closest match to the job requirements.
Match Your Qualifications to the Job
Ensure to also match your qualifications to the job, by seeking out keywords in the requirements sections. Nevertheless, some times it is essential that you go beyond the outline of the job posting.
In conclusion, ask your references to highlight your soft skills, such as empathy, conflicts resolutions, etc. and how these skills were used to benefit the company, co-workers, clients and customers.