6 Soft Skills Employers Should Value in Today’s Applicants

Sorting through applicants can become a time-consuming and overwhelming task. It can be tempting to narrow the potential applicant list by considering only the hard skills the applicants need to excel in the position. However, this neglects several skills and qualities directly impacting an applicant’s performance. These six soft skills should be valued when considering applicants. 

1. Communication

An applicant should have communication skills. These skills include active listening, verbal, nonverbal, and written communication. With these skills, an applicant will effectively work with fellow employees, suppliers, and clients. Applicants with communication skills are more likely to listen and follow directions. 

2. Time Management

Applicants could have all the required hard skills, but they won’t effectively complete their work without time management skills. This drives down the productivity of the entire team. Look for time management skills like time blocking, planning, realistic goal setting, and delegation. 

3. Work Ethic

Hopefully, your employees take their career seriously. You want someone with a strong work ethic because these are the people you can depend on. Employees with a good work ethic take their position within a company seriously. They are the most reliable, allowing you to effectively set goals and long-term plans. Applicants with a strong work ethic will have reliable punctuality, professionalism, and self-discipline. 

4. Interpersonal Skills

While you want someone who can functionally perform the job, they also need to integrate into your existing team. Maintaining positive morale is crucial for employee retention and productivity. The applicant you hire must have interpersonal skills to effectively form relationships with the existing team. They should have personal accountability, collaboration ability, and a willingness to develop professional relationships with other employees. 

5. Critical Thinking

Choosing an applicant with critical thinking skills will strengthen your team. Analyzing, evaluating, and synthesizing information enables employees and the entire team to strengthen their professional skills. You can empower employees with deductive reasoning to solve hurdles faced in their position. These individuals tend to be innovators who will help drive the company to greater success. 

6. Conflict Resolution

Even with the most cohesive team, there will come a time when people disagree. Hiring applicants with conflict resolution skills will go a long way to ensure you maintain positive morale. Look for negotiation, mediation, and conflict resolution skills. In addition, applicants should have empathy. That way, employees can effectively communicate among themselves to resolve disagreements and conflicts. With conflicts resolved, morale remains positive, and the team becomes stronger. 

Look For Hard and Soft Skills

To improve your hiring practices, consider hard and soft skills. The hard skills are those required to perform the position’s tasks effectively. The soft skills don’t directly relate to the job but are supportive in helping employees accomplish their assigned tasks. They include communication, time management, work ethic, critical thinking, and interpersonal skills. When hiring, you may find that an applicant lacks teachable hard skills but embodies all of the positive soft skills, making them a stronger hire. 

Find top talent when you work with the skilled team at BOS Staffing.

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