What are Transferable Skills? How Can they Help Me Get a Job?


What are transferable skills?

Transferable skills are skills and abilities that learned in one situation that can be applied to another situation.

How do you get transferable skills?

Working at a job, doing volunteer work, playing sports, being active in school organizations…the ways you can gain transferable skills are almost endless!

Why are transferable skills important?

If you’re lacking experience in the jobs you’re applying for, transferable skills can be a great way to highlight why you’re right for the role.

What are some examples of transferable skills?

We can divide transferable skills into six broad categories: communication, personal, people, management, clerical and computer skills, and technical skills. Below are some common transferable skills that you may have.

Communication skills

  • Understand and carry out verbal instructions
  • Understand and carry out written instructions
  • Public speaking
  • Able to write clearly
  • Bilingual

Personal skill

  • Use critical thinking skills to solve problems
  • Time management
  • Setting and attaining goals
  • Able to plan

People skills

  • Collaborate with others
  • Receive feedback
  • Resolve conflicts
  • Team player
  • Customer service skills
  • Developing rapport with coworkers and customers

Management skills

  • Supervise others
  • Motivate others
  • Provide feedback on others performance
  • Team building

Clerical and computer

  • Have good phone etiquette
  • Can take phone messages
  • Can use basic software, like Microsoft Word or PowerPoint
  • Can use printers, copiers, and fax machines
  • Can send and receive emails
  • Typing skills

Technical skills

  • Can use tools or equipment used on the job
  • Math skills
  • Can work within a budget
  • Assemble or make things

There are many other transferable skills. Think about which ones you might possess!

How do you list these skills on a resume?

By giving specific examples. For example, instead of just writing “management skills,” you might write “managed a team of four volunteers organizing a highway cleanup.”