Great news for U.S. workers: we’re currently experiencing one of the tightest labor markets in American history. The bad news (for employers, but maybe not job seekers): the U.S. facing a serious “skills gap“. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, our country currently has over 7 million unfilled jobs.
In light of the shortage of qualified workers, companies are becoming more open to considering non-traditional candidates. Companies like Google, Apple, IBM and Bank of America don’t even require applicants to have a college degree anymore. But instead of focusing on the need for specific titles and job experience, many organizations are starting to focus more on skills that a potential employee could bring. This is especially the case at tech companies like Facebook. As Janelle Gale, the company’s vice president of human resources told CNBC: “Skills really matter the most.”
Her recommendation for workers who want to land a job at a company like Facebook is to focus on skills and apply — even if your resume doesn’t line up with the job description.
“We actually value skills over experience in the grand scheme of things,” she says. “Apply if you have the relevant skills even if you don’t have the right experience, because we’re looking underneath the surface for what’s really going to matter here and that’s what skills you can bring to the table.”
LinkedIn recently evaluated hundreds of thousands of job postings to identify which skills companies need most in 2019. They discovered that employers are seeking workers with both soft skills and hard technical skills, as listed below:
5 most in-demand soft skills in 2019:
5. Time Management
5 most desired hard skills in 2019:
5. UX Design
4. People Management
3. Analytical Reasoning
2. Artificial Intelligence
- Cloud Computing
Interestingly, creativity and cloud computing scored #1 as the most sought-after soft and hard skills in 2019, according to the LinkedIm research.
As explained by Paul Petrone, editor of LinkedIn Learning, this year’s list shows some transformation in employers’ priorities: “Interestingly, the newcomers to our list were uniquely human traits: Among soft skills, creativity and adaptability joined the list for the first time, and among hard skills, people management was a new addition,” he told CNBC.
“While digital skills like cloud computing and artificial intelligence topped the list of hard skills companies need most, the emergence of these three new skills suggests that employers recognize the importance of embracing modern technologies as well as recognizing those things technology can’t do: connect with other people, engage in out-of-the-box thinking and quickly adapt to new priorities or problems.”
By focusing on in-demand skills like these, workers can ensure that they rise to the top of the pool for candidates applying for high-demand jobs.