FutureProof: What are The Top 10 Skills In Demand In the Workforce Right Now?

The above picture shows 6 people, 4 men and 2 women dressed for work looking down at their devices and paperwork

FutureProof: What are The Top 10 Skills In Demand In the Workforce Right Now?

1)    Leadership

2)    Communication Skills

3)    Time Management Skills

4)    AI Skills

5)    Cloud/Distributed Computing Skills

6)    Customer Service Skills

7)    Project Management Skills

8)    Microsoft Office Skills

9)      Sales Skills

10)   Administrative/Office Skills

"In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity," said Albert Einstein. 

And it may seem difficult to get a new job or start a career. But if we want to be smart like Einstein, we have to know where to spot the opportunities. We have to know and develop the skills in demand in today's job market.

What are the most wanted skills hiring managers are looking for?

That's the subject of today's blog post as we detail 10 skills that will help you land the perfect job.

Soft Leadership Skills

The majority of skills on this list are very specific hard skills valued by employers. But the consensus among job experts is that soft skills, such as leadership and time management, are more valued simply because they manifest themselves in innumerable situations.

When you interview for a position, make sure you mention these soft skills front and center. Here are some additional tips to help you prepare for interviews.

1. Leadership Skills

Every company values employees who possess leadership skills. Many people lead by example and by exhibiting a can-do attitude. Other's lead by helping, supporting, encouraging, and teaching their peers.

Strong leaders also know how to take complex jobs and projects and break them down into simple tasks that can be delegated to the right people.

Typically, leaders are self-starters and managers know they don't have to oversee them continuously.

Many people take college or supplemental classes on leadership to help them develop this skill.  Military veterans are already trained and experienced in leadership, a fact recognized by many hiring managers. 

2. Communication Skills

It may seem ironic in the age of AI for employers to seek individuals with exceptional interpersonal skills. But when you look at the "required skills" section of any job listing, you are very likely to see the words, "strong communications skills." 

What are employers really looking for in communications skills? They want to know if you're able to build positive relationships with co-workers and clients alike. Do you listen well? Can you adjust your style of communication to fit different situations?

3. Time Management Skills

Time management is another area where military veterans excel. You're accustomed to multitasking, so you can be where you're supposed to be when you're supposed to be there.

Time management skills can be acquired in many ways, not just on the job. Parents, for example, must balance their children's schedule in addition to their own.

Put your time management skills at the top of your resume. Mention instances where time management was essential during your interviews.

Hard Skills in Demand

The rest of our list is comprised of specific hard skills highly desired in the job market today.

We're going through another tech boom and, as such, you'll notice many of these jobs are tech-based. That's good news if you have strong technical experience. If you don't have a technical background, you'll still find plenty of employment opportunities. Still, take caution to stay abreast of technology as it now pervades all industries.

4. AI Skills

A recent survey reveals 61% of businesses consider artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning to be their top business priority in 2019. And yet this burgeoning industry is still extremely understaffed.

Clearly, AI opportunities abound but they come with a caveat. As a newer industry, many of the jobs in AI haven't been created yet. 

So how do you prepare for jobs that do not yet exist?

You need to possess valuable soft skills for starters. Hiring managers are also looking for those with strong tech and STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) backgrounds.

"Get your foot in the door" is the mantra for this industry. Take any job, even if it's below your skill set. Then dedicate yourself to learning on the job and take advantage of new job openings as they are created.

5. Cloud/Distributed Computing Skills

Distributed computing is a system where multiple computer systems work on a single problem. Cloud computing is an emerging trend in distributed computing utilizing cloud platforms from Google, Amazon, and others.  

The primary benefit of these networked computing systems is speed. You need speed to be able to process large amounts of data quickly and to solve complex tasks more efficiently.

These computing systems typically work with large databases, so knowledge of SQL and MySQL are musts. Ruby, Ruby on Rails, Perl, JavaScript, and Java are popular coding languages to build applications and services. These languages can be learned in a variety of places, from colleges to coding camps.

6. Customer Service Skills

As we've seen, the emerging job market reflects the age of technology we live in. But that doesn't mean other skills aren't needed, even in tech companies. The most vibrant and successful companies understand their success is dependent on their customer's success with their products and services. 

For one, customer service builds trust, and people tend to do more business with companies they trust. Also, many consumers consider customer service to be more important than price. It's comforting for them to know the company will take care of them if there's a problem.

7. Project Management Skills

Most companies have at least one major project they're focusing on in addition to their daily core functions. These endeavors feature large teams working together to complete the project. However, with such big projects and large teams, it can be difficult to gauge how well the project is going. 

Enter the project manager, whose job it is to lead the team in initiating, planning, and executing projects. The project manager must be skilled at multitasking and able to wear different hats.

This job is another job perfect for military vets with leadership experience executing a mission or objective.

8. Microsoft Office Skills

Even in today's high tech world, the old stand-bys in the Microsoft Office Suite are still in demand.

In fact, Novel Aspect, a Cloud hosting firm, analyzed Indeed job listings and found the most wanted skill is Excel. The rest of the top five includes Outlook, PowerPoint, iLife, and Access.

Admittedly, you won't find many job listings for "Spreadsheet Creators."  But every company can utilize someone to make company documents in Excel and other Office programs.

9. Sales Skills

Those who are successful in sales will always be in high demand. Sales are arguably the most important factor to drive and sustain a business. 

If you enjoy meeting and helping people, sales can be a very rewarding career. Sales can also be very lucrative depending on the field you go into. The highest paying sales jobs are found in financial services, advertising, insurance, medical devices, pharmaceuticals, and real estate.

10. Administrative and Office Skills

Businesses of all sizes require administrative and office support staff. In particular, the healthcare and customer service industries are experiencing rapid growth and looking for professionals to help in these areas.

Those with experience can move into high-level executive and administrative assistant positions with an excellent salary.

The Bottom Line

The age of technology is now, and it's not going away anytime soon. As such, many of the skills in demand the most are tech-related. Even non-technical positions include a few duties and tasks which require technical know-how.

You can find old school positions such as sales and customer service or new school jobs such as AI development or cloud computing. Find something you would enjoy doing, work hard, and continue to learn for the best chance of success.

If you enjoyed this article, please check out more helpful articles about today's job market on our blog.