Applying For a Job: Soft Skills Can Make All the Difference

Marcel Keller

 Applying For a Job: Soft Skills Can Make All the Difference


You want to be hired? Learn what hiring managers most value in soft skills.

Talk about importance of those skills and their influence on the career.

The most optimistic jobseekers out there may think that looking the part and talking the talk will get them all the way, but there are certain things that hiring managers are looking out for which they may well have forgotten to mention. On the other hand, the most pessimistic jobseeker may think that they have nothing more to give, but their most valuable traits could sadly be going unnoticed.

Why soft skills are so important

Today, having the necessary hard skills is only the starting point; as you’ll rarely be the only one capable of doing the job. So it’s worth considering what makes you the best candidate. Why will you be successful, when others similarly qualified may fail? We’re talking about the most useful soft skills that can give you the edge over other candidates in your field.

The truth is, these soft skills are not easily taught, so if you possess them from the offset you’re going to be seen as a good catch. A business may be looking for someone to develop and grow internally, so certain skills will be required if this is the case. It could be that a business has suffered from the negative traits of previous employees, so are looking for candidates who can demonstrate an exemplary work ethic. And often, recruiters recognise that some personalities generally perform better than others in certain roles. So don’t be afraid to mention in an interview what may at first seem obvious or unnecessary. It could be just what the business requires.

Of course, the list of desired credentials are endless and unique to each company, role and manager. But there are a number of soft skills that the majority of hiring managers consider to be most beneficial in today’s workplace. And Kelly’s Hiring Process Report 2015 reveals exactly which soft skills today’s candidates are most likely to require.

The top 5 soft skills for 2015


  1. Communication Skills
  2. Self-Motivation Skills / A Self Starter
  3. Responsible  / Accountable
  4. Results Orientated
  5. Teamwork


Kelly’s survey results show that, globally, the perfect candidate is a good communicator who is motivated and fits in well from the start, with little hand-holding. And when looking at results from individual countries, there are other additional things that hiring managers also value. In the UK, it is important to be a hard worker. In Germany, engagement is key. And in Russia, it’s all about results.

So if you’re looking for new ways to impress at your next interview, why not consider the most sought-after soft skills and demonstrate how you’ve got what it takes to succeed. In addition, don’t forget to reference them in your CV to ensure you’re doing everything you can to stand out from the crowd – right from the start.

To find out more about what hiring managers are looking for in 2015 you can take a look at the full Hiring Process Report 2015 right here.