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Building your resume: you may be more qualified than you think

There are a set of universal skills that are part of any job. Most people acquire them from just living and breathing, some from previous professions and others from studying certain units at university.

What are these magical skills? According to SEEK there are seven and they are, in no particular order:

  • Great communication skills
  • Flexibility, adaptability and innovation
  • Creativity and problem solving 
  • Results focused 
  • Great interpersonal skills 
  • Computer skills 
  • Ability to research

These universal, otherwise known as transferrable skills, are abilities you have developed over time that are applicable but aren't immediately relevant to the profession you are seeking.

Hobbies, sporting affiliations, past work, units at university, volunteering are all places where you have gained experience and where you may very well have picked up these transferrable skills.

Given these are universal, the magic comes in being able to show potential employers how they are relevant in the context of the job you are applying for. The best way to do that is by example.

For instance, if you want to show ‘creativity and problem solving’ think of a time you used those skills in a previous role and explain what you did, how you did it and the outcome you got to demonstrate you have the skill.

A good rule of thumb is to be more general in describing how your skills are applicable in different environments. If you don’t know where to start, this assessment of transferable skills tool from the Australian government My Career website is a great resource.

This is part two of a series on how to build your career while studying. Keen for more? Read part one and three.