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What employers want

These are the most sought-after skills in any industry
What employers want
Photo: Freepik

Video killed the radio star, and online recruiting technology is killing the cover letter.

Between the bevy of personal information readily available on social media and the colossal strides forward in recruitment and hiring tech over the past several years, employers are finding the old-school cover letter less useful.

Instead, they’re using technology powered by artificial intelligence and machine learning to scan hundreds, sometimes thousands of user profiles in order to find their ideal candidate.

Gone are the days of making a great first impression with a well-crafted letter. Now the best way to get your foot in the proverbial door is to make sure your resume isn’t passed over by the bots tasked with serving them up to the hiring manager.

What’s the best way to get noticed, then? Make sure your resume speaks to what employers really want. Many applicants tend to focus on filling their resume with the specific skills that make them uniquely qualified to fill a position. This is important, of course, but it can be easy to overlook the more general and essential skills employers are asking for.

We looked through millions of active job postings currently on to determine the skills mentioned most often by employers across all industries. These are the top five you don’t want to overlook when optimizing your resume:

1. Customer service

2. Communication skills

3. Entrepreneurship

4. Flexibility

5. Sales experience

Although these skills seem as though they’d be most important for sales jobs, our data show employers across a variety of industries want candidates with great customer service and communication skills: Communication is the most-mentioned skill for tech industry jobs, for example. Even customer service ranks in the top 10 skills for tech.

Communication skills rank in the top 10 within the health care, construction and manufacturing industries as well, according to ZipRecruiter data. This means no matter what job you’re applying for, including these skills in your resume will be crucial for getting noticed.

Applying for a senior-level position at a tech company? Reconsider dropping that customer service job you had back in college from your resume. Looking for a job in health care? Find an opportunity to mention how you used communication skills to work collaboratively in your previous role.

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