Banner Default Image

Why are Transferable Skills Key in Technology Jobs?

Back to Blogs
Blog Img

Why are Transferable Skills Key in Technology Jobs?

When trying to fill an open position within your company, you’d be remiss to ignore the value of transferable skills. 

Too often, leaders make the mistake of judging job applicants solely on their direct qualifications and experience, forgetting the importance of potential. 

While this approach might work for positions with an oversupply of suitable employees, it’s not necessarily a sustainable mindset for the technology industry.

The Growing Technology Talent Shortage

95% of UK businesses that tried to fill a technology role in 2022 struggled to find someone suitable (Source: UKTN). Isn’t that concerning?

Although, on the surface, it might seem prevalent that you “stick to your guns” and search for a candidate that ticks every single one of your boxes; you may actually be limiting your options by doing so. 

There are 1.57 million job seekers out there (Source: UK Parliament), some of whom could meet your requirements almost perfectly. The only problem? They’re currently in a different industry. 

Can Transferable Skills Offer the Solution?

As an employer facing a talent shortage, it’s critical that you broaden your horizons. 

Through effective training schemes, leaders can convert a suitable candidate into a perfect employee – eradicating knowledge gaps through strategic learning and development. 

If applicants for your open position have a strong foundation of relevant transferable skills, you may want to consider pursuing them further.

As The Success Group said best:

“Transferable skills are a way for [candidates] to show that they can do the job, even if they aren't the perfect match of the job description. Transferable skills can highlight someone’s potential to be an asset to a company.”

The Top 8 Sought-After Transferable Skills for Technology Jobs

To thrive in the fast-paced, agile technology industry that we all know and love, there are certain skills that every candidate should have. These include:

  1. Time Management

  2. Communication

  3. Computer Literacy

  4. Stress Management

  5. Critical Thinking

  6. Digital Proficiency

  7. Self-Awareness

  8. Creativity

If you’re able to identify a candidate with these transferable skills at their disposal, you’ll have found someone who can contribute to the future success of your company. 

Even if it takes them a few months to settle in, their unique insight of coming from a different background will aid your team’s performance - not hinder it.

How to Recruit Candidates with Transferable Skills

Once you start to consider job seekers that are outside of your immediate network, you’ll be opening the door to thousands of potential employees.

To make sure only suitable candidates get progressed to the next stage (saving you time in the future), there’s a specific approach you should consider taking.

Step 1. Pinpoint Your Required Skills

As with any other job posting, you need to take some time to decide which skills you’d like your candidates to have. 

However, in this instance, instead of naming specific technology qualifications (such as “must be proficient in HTML”), you could take a broader approach.

For example: for an entry-level Software Developer role, you’ll want someone who is a problem-solver first and foremost, a fast learner, and observant.

Step 2. Write a Clear and Detailed Job Description

Once you have a list of your ideal skills, you can start to write the job description. Be as succinct and clear as possible, including detail where it’s required. 

The more information you can provide, the higher the likelihood that only relevant candidates will apply.

When you’re trying to fill more specialist roles, such as Robotics Engineers, ask for applicants with a technology-adjacent background in Manufacturing, Energy, Transportation, Health Care, Agriculture, or the Military.

Step 3. Use an ATS to Review Applications

As the job posting goes live, plug your desired transferable skills as keywords into an Applicant Tracking System (ATS) so it can efficiently review all your submissions before you look at them. 

Any candidates that don’t have the transferable skills you asked for will automatically be disqualified, stopping you from having to manually review thousands of invaluable applications. 

When you have a good spread of quality CVs, compare each one to your original list and select any that would be a good fit for your company. Then, start to dig deeper.

Step 4. Conduct Your Candidate Research

An important step of any recruitment journey, it’s vital that you always do background research on your favourite candidates.

As you do this, you might uncover details that either make them more suitable for the role (like a training course they completed a while ago that would support their growth in your company) or less suitable.

When you’re ready, invite the remaining candidates to an interview - remembering to judge them based on their potential. Just because they’ve never worked in this certain position before doesn’t mean they are not passionate about what they do, and their career prospects with you.

The perfect candidate is out there.

Hire with Forward Role

For help expanding your horizons and driving change in your industry through intelligent recruitment, contact us. 

At Forward Role, you’ll find genuine Marketing, Digital and Tech experts who care passionately about delivering for our clients and candidates. As a  client, you can expect exceptional delivery and communication as a matter of course. As a candidate, we'll treat you the way we'd like to be treated.

Check out our latest job opportunities today.

Millie McNish is a Cyber Security Technology Recruitment Consultant at Forward Role, connect with her here