How to List Transferable Skills on a Resume (Samples, Tips, Templates)

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Transferable skills in a resume refer to those skills you have accumulated back in school, internships, volunteers, or any previous working experiences. If you are a fresh college graduate, those who are looking for career changes, or those who have been away from the work field for a certain amount of time, transferable skills are one of the cards you should play with prudently when designing your resume.

What Are Transferable Skills & Why Are They Important?

Imagine that you are looking for a position in a specific field but lack relevant working experience, how are you supposed to convince the recruiters that you have something to offer on the table?

In most talent searches, recruiters might not only look for people who have similar working experiences to the field they are offering. Some companies are interested in fresh talents that might have something new and diverse to offer, but still have skills that are needed for that position, either directly or indirectly. 

Those skills are regarded as transferable skills. 

For example, someone who has previous volunteering experiences in animal shelters might show promising skills in caring and empathy that are in course with the skills sets in hospitality.

Transferable skills resume is not hard to craft. However, without the right knowledge on how to list transferable skills on a resume, it would be quite challenging to express your best quality to the recruiter.

While transferable skills could let the recruiter know about the skills you have developed throughout your study or career, it also has diverse uses and could be extended in different contexts: resume, cover letter, and job interview.

Transferable skills for your CV or resume could allow the recruiters to scan through the resume for overlapping skills between what you have and what they are looking for.

Transferable skills cover letter could include a body paragraph of your transferable skill set that is also mentioned in the job description. Elaborate on what you have gone through or how you have been using these skills in the previous experience. 

A cover letter usually includes more insights and clarifications of the applicants and is typically attached to a cv or resume.

Transferable competencies and skills could also be emphasized during the interview session. You could start by telling a specific story or case of when you are applying those transferable skills.

💡 Tip: Always remember to answer the questions with a real sample of when you are dealing with certain events, while at the same time highlighting the transferable skills. Show, not tell.

10 Types of Transferable Skills

To make sure you come up with a powerful transferable skills example for your resume, it is best to think about the skills you are confident with and could be brought along to the next career. 

Read through the job description to assure that the list of transferable skills for the resume is in line with what the job positions require. 

Transferable skills might vary across individuals, but some types of transferable skills are high in demand. Transferable skills are necessary for successful employment.

1. Communication

Communication transferable skills are highly valued in the workplace. The ability to communicate and work with co-workers is very well needed to ensure an excellent working dynamic of a company.

Communication transferable skills include:

  • Active listening
  • Public speaking
  • Responsiveness
  • Verbal communication
  • Written communication

2. Analytical Skills

Analytical skills are one type of transferable skill. Analytical skill is very essential since problem-solving is part of the everyday world. Solving problems within the company and solving problems for customers all require an adequate amount of analytical skills.

Examples of analytical transferable skills include:

  • Brainstorming
  • Data mining
  • Diagnostics
  • Research
  • Troubleshooting

3. Teamwork

Teamwork skills will decide how well you could work with other people. Some recruiters might question your teamwork skills by asking you to describe your previous teamwork experience.

Types of transferable teamwork skills include:

  • Attention to detail
  • Collaboration
  • Listening
  • Prioritization
  • Time management

4. Organization

Previous organization experience could train you with some useful transferable organization skills. Working qualities such as being organized, punctual, on time with deadlines are a pretty much highly demanded quality.

Transferable organization skills include:

  • Coordinating and planning
  • Delegation
  • Setting goal
  • Time management
  • Working under pressure

5. Management

To achieve the company’s goal and objective, qualified employers with excellent management skills are indispensable.

List of transferable management skills include:

  • Commercial awareness
  • Communication
  • Decision making
  • Forward planning
  • Mentoring

6. Leadership

Leadership skills involve qualities such as being dependable and an excellent communicator. Leadership skills are pretty much universal and could be used in different fields. 

Leadership transferable skills include:

  • Conflict resolution
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Project management
  • Risk-taking
  • Team building

7. Creative Thinking

Creative thinking skills mean the ability to think out of the box. Recruiters will value people who tend to think from a fresh perspective and might contribute to solving a problem.

Examples of transferable creative thinking skills include:

  • Conceptualizing situations
  • Connecting abstract
  • Have foresight
  • Have great imagination
  • Synthesizing ideas

8. Critical Thinking

Critical thinking involves a lot of well-thought solutions to a problem. It is also a required skill to make a great decision.

List of transferable critical thinking skills include:

  • Collect information
  • Draw conclusion
  • Open-minded
  • Pinpoint issue
  • Self-evaluate

9. Computer & Technical Skills

In the technology-driven world, an applicant who is up-to-date with technology and equipped with the ability to learn new computer and technical skills. 

Computer and technical transferable skills include:

  • Database
  • Presentation software
  • Programming skills
  • Troubleshooting
  • Word Processing

10. Other Soft & Hard Skills

Aside from the above-mentioned list of transferable skills for a resume, there are still other skills such as personal transferable skills that one has accumulated across time. 

These skills could be categorized into hard and soft transferable skills.

Transferable hard skills refer to those specific capabilities or expertise that were learned or polished in the previous study/ working period. The mastery of some popular and latest hard skills could boost up your competence and qualifications, especially if you meet up the skills requirements of that specific job opening. 

Other than hard skills, you could also work on your transferable soft skills. Recruiters do not only focus on the technical skills but also on your traits and attitudes.

Transferable Skills Examples for Resumes (Different Jobs)

Every occupation emphasizes different skills from the applicant. Even if you have multiple skills, it will be such a waste of not using them smartly on the resume.  

Below are some transferable skills resume examples that one could transfer from a particular profession:

  1. Teacher
  2. Customer Service
  3. Retail Manager
  4. Hospitality
  5. HR
  6. Bartender
  7. Waitress
  8. Engineer
  9. Restaurant Manager
  10. Chef

1. Teacher

Although teachers are known for their professionalism and expertise in some specific fields, they also possess strong transferable skills that could be brought to another profession. 

Teacher transferable skills resume examples include: 

  • Analytical skills
  • Communication skills
  • Leadership skills
  • Management skills
  • Computer and technical skills

2. Customer Service

By dealing with enormous clients back in the career, customer service transferable skills include:

  • Collaboration
  • Effective communication
  • Emotional intelligence
  • Problem-solving
  • Sales

3. Retail Manager

Being experienced in day-to-day operations and management, transferable skills from retail management include:

  • Composure
  • Cultural awareness
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Multitask
  • Time management

4. Hospitality

Hospitality is a broad field, such as accommodation, airlines, tourist attractions, etc. Yet, they still have common grounds in terms of transferable skills. Transferable skills from hospitality are:

  • Communication
  • Flexibility
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Multi-tasking
  • Teamwork

5. HR

Having the experience of interviewing, screening candidates, and directing the administration in a company, HR Transferable skills include:

  • Advising
  • Administrative skills
  • Coaching
  • Cultural awareness
  • Communication skills

6. Bartender

Working as a bartender puts you into a close experience of engaging with customers. Bartender transferable skills include:

  • Communication
  • Composure
  • Friendliness
  • Good memory
  • Organization

7. Waitress

Waitress is responsible for providing professional service and bringing delight to customers. Waitress transferable skills include:

  • High energy 
  • Multi-tasking
  • Organization
  • Resolve conflict
  • Verbal Communication

8. Engineer

The engineer has the duty of solving emerging technical problems. Engineering transferable skills include:

  • Attention to detail
  • Pressure management
  • Problem-solving
  • Structural analysis
  • Teamwork

9. Restaurant Manager

Restaurant managers are equipped with ability that allows them to supervise the operation of the restaurant. Transferable skills of a restaurant manager include:

  • Customer service
  • Commercial awareness
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Organizational
  • Teamwork skills

10. Chef 

A chef is responsible to work around the clock to assure food arrives on the customer’s desk. Chef transferable skills include:

  • Creative
  • Leadership
  • Multitask
  • Teamwork
  • Time management

CakeResume provides the best resume templates & examples for talents to demonstrate your qualifications. Let us help you land the dream with a strong resume (free download)!

How to List Transferable Skills on a Resume?

After carefully selecting and understanding which transferable skills to include in your resume the skills will not serve their full purpose without placing them in the right resume section.

Where can we put transferable skills on a resume?

  1. Resume Summary/Objective
  2. Work Experience Description
  3. Skills Section

1. Resume Summary/Objective


Transferable skills in a resume could be included at the top of your resume, which is in the resume summary or resume objective. This could allow the recruiter to quickly browse through what skills you have got to offer from your previous experience.

For example, if you have strong leadership skills from being the chief of student association back in the university, you could include the transferable skills from university to work in this way:

"Result-driven business administration graduate with strong leadership skills from being the leader of 15 students for the University of Michigan 2019 Student Association. Ready to apply strong commitment and creative thinking skills as public relation in Orange company."

2. Work Experience Description

You could also state the transferable skills from university in your work experience section. Instead of only including the achievements, also state the skills you applied for achieving those goals. Here's an example of transferable skills in the experience section: 

EXPERIENCE

English-Spanish Master of Ceremony

2018 Gala Banquet in the Embassy of Spain

  • Verbal communication in English and Spanish
  • Organizational skills
  • Flexibility

Waiter
Z Restaurant

  • Time management
  • Customer service
  • Friendliness

3. Skills Section

Transferable skills from university could also be listed in the skills section in the form of bullet points. These could show that you have several useful and excellent skills to offer. Just remember to go through the job description to make sure that you include relevant skill sets.

SKILLS

  • Great time management
  • High cultural sensitivity
  • Interpersonal communication
  • Leadership 
  • Verbal and written communication in Japanese

Tips on Including Transferable Skills on a Resume

✅ Decide the most suitable resume section to include the transferable skills.

Depending on the availability of relevant transferable skills, you could decide on the best place to include your transferable skills in the resume from the explanations we have provided in the previous section.

For fresh university graduates with almost no previous working experience, you could include the transferable skills on the resume summary/ objective section to show that you are ready and dedicated to achieving goals in that position. You could also describe your previous application for certain skills in the skills set section. 

✅ Include descriptive resume keywords.

The best way of including transferable skills in a resume is to explain them descriptively. You could include some descriptive keywords to explain your skills. It could also provide more context on how you have applied and make use of those skills.

✅ Quantify the results.

Always remember to include numbers in the achievement section. By including quantifiable results, the recruiters will have more idea on the scale of what you have achieved previously.

✅ Research the job description.

By reading through the job description, you are more likely to include the transferable skills successfully. You might not want to overemphasize the skills sets that are not required for that position.

✅ Take advantage of your personality traits.

Aside from some professional or technical skills set that are required by the company, some companies also emphasize the personalities and traits of the applicants. Therefore, make sure you understand what the company wants, and include the personality into the transferable skills section,

🔑  Key Takeaways:

Regardless of whether you are fresh university graduates or someone ready to take a great leap from your previous professional field, transferable skills are one of the key elements that you should never leave out if you would like to present yourself in the most ultimate ways. From this article, you now have the knowledge of:

  • Transferable skills and their importance
  • Different types of transferable skills
  • Transferable skills example for resume
  • How to list transferable skills with tips
Find this blog helpful? Follow us to get more insightful content. CakeResume is the best free resume builder that provides you with everything you need for your job search journey.

--- Originally written by Fedrik Hansen ---

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