Employability Skills can be described as an individual’s transferable skills needed to make them ’employable.’ Hence, they are the essential skills, personal qualities and values that enable you to thrive in any workplace.
Along with good technical understanding and subject knowledge, employers often outline a set of skills that they want from an employee. These skills are what they believe will equip the employee to carry out their role to the best of their ability.
Employability depends on your knowledge, skills and attitudes, how you use those assets, and how you present them to employers;
Here’s how to display your employability skills
Employers value employability skills; there are what employers look out for. Therefore, it is vital to highlight examples of when you used these skills in your job application. You should also explain how these skills can benefit the company, as well as how they make you the best candidate for the job.
Also, you can demonstrate your employability skills to employers through how you conduct your job search. You begin to display your communication skills from the moment you are in communication with your future employer; particularly, in your cover letter and how you respond to an invitation for an interview; showing the initiative to follow up politely after the interview shows you take initiative and are motivated.
There are three crucial stages in displaying your employability skills even before you officially get the job;
Stage 1. Application and CV
The application stage is the most crucial stage. It is the first and most vital opportunity you will have to display your written communication skills. You must remember the saying that goes thus “You only have one first chance to make one first impression that lasts a lifetime”.
The quote outlines two irretrievable and crucial things: time and a first impression. Hence, you must ensure that your application looks good, clear, concise and without spelling or grammatical errors.
It is important you do some research about the company beforehand. It is also vital that you study the job description and ask questions where you are not clear. Calling or emailing the company for job description clarification etc. shows initiative and enthusiasm.
Your CV and Cover Letter are important determinant if you will be considered for interview;
Therefore, ensure your CV is tailored to the position you are applying; this for shows that you understand what the employer is looking for. Also match your achievements to the job description highlighting the employability and transferable skills that enables such achievements.
The personal statement at the beginning of your CV should display your experience and employability skills. It needs to reflect the personal strengths and transferable skills appropriate to the position you are applying for. Hence, its title ‘Professional Summary”.
In a final note, always send a covering letter to support the application. Your Cover Letter serves as a crucial introduction; it highlights the personal qualities that match the job description and refer to the job-specific qualifications on your CV.
Stage 2: The interview
Interview is not just about what you say, it’s about the impression you make and the way you conduct yourself. It gives the interviewers an idea of you as a person; therefore, always be punctual; timekeeping shows personal organisation and it is a crucial factor in sustaining the impression the interviewer has of you.
Likewise, present yourself appropriately and look your best. Have a positive outlook, wear a smile, look alert and enthusiastic. It’s okay to be nervous, however, do not let it steal your shine.
Be sincere, and if you lack experience in a particular area, express interest in developing your skills and knowledge.
Clearly express yourself and do not shy away from asking questions where you are not clear. Talk about your achievements outside work; because it shows that you are successful even without the job and you won’t become a liability but you will be bringing your Prior Learning Experiences to bear.
Stage 3: After the Interview
It is vital you end a thank you note after your interview. Send an email thanking the hiring manager for their time; as well as expressing enthusiastically your willingness to contribute optimally to the growth of the organisation. Likewise, mention one specific thing about the interview or what you learned about their organization.
Finally, mention how much you are looking forward to hearing from them. The thank you note is an opportunity to demonstrate your excitement and appreciation. Hence, it is better to keep it short and precise.
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