New analysis from networking site LinkedIn, shows that 2019’s employers are looking for a combination of both hard and soft skills, with creativity topping the list of desired attributes.
This coincides with recent findings from the World Economic Forum’s Future of Jobs report, which concluded that ‘human’ skills like originality, initiative and critical thinking are likely to increase in value as technology and automation advances.
“Strengthening a soft skill is one of the best investments you can make in your career, as they never go out of style,” said LinkedIn learning editor, Paul Petrone.
“Plus, the rise of AI is only making soft skills increasingly important, as they are precisely the type of skills robots can’t automate.”
“That’s why 57% of senior leaders today say soft skills are more important than hard skills.”
Below are the five soft skills companies are looking for most in 2019 according to LinkedIn’s data.
- Creativity – While robots are great at optimising old ideas, organisations most need creative employees who can conceive the solutions of tomorrow.
- Persuasion – Having a great product, a great platform or a great concept is one thing, but the key is persuading people to buy into it.
- Collaboration – As projects grow increasingly more complex and global in the age of AI, effective collaboration only grows more important.
- Adaptability – An adaptable mind is an essential tool for navigating today’s ever-changing world, as yesterday’s solutions won’t solve tomorrow’s problems.
- Time Management – A timeless skill, mastering time management today will serve you the rest of your career.
While soft skills have grown increasingly important, LinkedIn said that there were also a number of ‘hard skills’ which were based on more direct requirements from companies.
Below are an outline of these skill categories and an explanation of why they are so in demand.
- Cloud Computing – As the world rushes toward the cloud, companies are desperately searching for engineers who have the skills to accommodate this demand.
- Artificial Intelligence – As the world rushes toward the cloud, companies are desperately searching for engineers who have the skills to accommodate this demand.
- Analytical Reasoning – AI skills are among the fastest-growing skills on LinkedIn, with a 190% increase in AI skills on LinkedIn from 2015 to 2017.
- People Management – The world has changed from a “command-and-control” model toward leaders who can coach and empower, a difficult skillset few professionals possess.
- UX Design – UX design is the key to making a digital world work for humans.
- Mobile Application Development – A skill that’s been in demand for several years as companies continue to design mobile-first platforms.
- Video Production – Demand for video production is spiking as video streaming represents 70% of all consumer Internet traffic.
- Sales Leadership – Sales is one of those skills that is always in demand, and great sales leaders are only becoming harder and harder to find.
- Translation – We are more connected globally than ever before, with translation skills breaking down one of the last remaining barriers: language.
- Audio Production – Similar to video, there’s been a spike in interest in podcasts and other audio digital formats recently, leading to increased demand for this skill.
- Natural Language Processing – The technology behind Alexa and Google Home, everything from our cars to our light bulbs are now becoming voice-activated.
- Scientific Computing – Scientific computing is generally used to solve problems with massive amounts of data to consider – a need as companies continue to collect more and more data.
- Game Development – In yet another sign of providing a better experience for digital users, the demand for those who can develop compelling online games remains strong.
- Social Media Marketing – Social media continues to be a popular way to communicate with others digitally, as new platforms disrupt the market.
- Animation – It is no surprise to see animation on the list, considering the surge of video traffic and the increasing prevalence of the GIF.
- Business Analysis – Similar to data-driven decision making, more and more companies are relying on analysts to help them guide strategic investments.
- Journalism – Once a dwindling skill, journalism isn’t just for journalists anymore as marketing and content teams alike vie for people who can tell compelling stories.
- Digital Marketing – With the rise of digital, it’s no surprise to see digital marketing as the most in-demand marketing skill on the list.
- Industrial Design – The demand for those who can design something that is both practical and eloquent will never go away.
- Competitive Strategies – Virtually all companies are facing increased competition, with organizations starved for people who can help them stay abreast and ahead of their competitors.
- Customer Service Systems – In a world where one bad experience can lead to a tweet the whole world sees, consistent customer service is increasingly paramount.
- Software Testing – New softwares are hitting the market at record-numbers – requiring more and more people who can ensure they actually work.
- Data Science – An in-demand skill for the past several years, there is still a strong need for those who can make sense of a magnitude of data.
- Computer Graphics – As a sizeable part of our digital world goes from 2D to 3D, companies are looking for people who can foster that transition.
- Corporate Communications – With social media, local mistakes can lead to global outrages, requiring people who can manage difficult situations.