Describe Your Skills


Don't have any work experience yet? Remember that you at least have skills and competences. Those skills and competences can be important for a (future) employer. You must put the skills and competences that are important for the position that you want to fulfill in the future. You want them to stand out even more on your resume. How can you achieve that goal? By making a skills resume.

Instead of your work experience, you emphasize the competencies and skills that are important for the position you want to fulfill. A skills resume is therefore not a resume that you can use unchanged over and over again. After all, different functions require different competencies and skills.

Skills resume isn't only for people with little work experience

Have you not worked for a long time? For example, have you traveled around the world, have you been ill for a long time, or did you take care of your children and household? Or are you a freelancer with an occasional temporary assignment? You then have a hole in your resume. Holes in a resume make many recruiters suspicious. By drawing up a skills resume, you'll notice the gap in your resume less. The different competencies and skills aren't listed in chronological order. Moreover, they are mentioned in a prominent place. A recruiter can therefore almost immediately see whether you have the skills and competences that are required to properly fulfill the vacant position.

Make a personal summary

How can you compensate for the lack of work experience? By catching the recruiter's attention with a personal summary. Your enthusiasm should make him curious about the rest of your curriculum vitae. Immediately after the personal details, therefore state your motivation to work for the company where you applied. In addition, state what your added value is for the company.

Indicating the right skills and competences

Immediately after the personal summary you state your competences and skills. It's not the intention to list all your skills and competences. Only list those competencies and skills that are relevant to the position that you want to fulfill. Therefore, start by determining which competencies are necessary to successfully perform a job. For example, are you applying for a position where you have to give presentations? Then it is relevant to mention something about your communication skills.

You must of course also determine what your skills and competences are. Don't just think about the training you have taken. Also while practicing your hobbies you have probably acquired all kinds of skills. As a leader of a scouting group, for example, you have acquired managerial skills. So remember that your professional and social life are important when determining your skills and competences.

Of course you also need to know the distinction between skills and competences. A skill is something you can do, for example being able to drive a forklift. A competence is a characteristic of behavior. Examples of competences are being creative, an eye for detail and being able to work accurately. A competence therefore refers to certain personal characteristics that you possess.

Describe competences and skills

Describe your skills as concretely as possible. So don't just write that you have good computer skills, but explain that with an example if possible. Do you think you have good computer skills? For example, write: I have good computer skills. In my spare time I have made a website for many friends and acquaintances. Do you have a good knowledge of the French language? Explain that too: I have a good knowledge of the French language. Studied for two years at a famous hotel school in New York.

Also describe your competencies as concretely as possible? Do you mention perseverance as one of your competencies? Explain that too. For example, write: I have perseverance. For years I have played volleyball at a high level. I have even been part of the national selection for some time. Unfortunately, a serious injury makes it impossible to continue playing at this level. Do you claim that you have organizational talent? Explain that too. For example, write: I have organizational talent. Several times I have organized exhibitions of local artists in the public library.

Naming performance

Have you delivered certain services? For example, have you published an article in a scientific journal, or have you set up a business yourself? You can also state achievements, if relevant for the position you aspire to, in your skills resume.

Professional description for the related work experience

You have work experience. Then you can name them after your skills, competencies and achievements. You don't have to do that in chronological order. In any case, emphasize work that's relevant to the new position that you want to fulfill, describe it professionally as possible.

The disadvantages of a skills resume

A skills resume also has disadvantages. A disadvantage has already been mentioned. It's not a standard resume. You'll have to adjust the resume again and again. It makes no sense to mention skills, competences and achievements that aren't relevant to the vacant position that you would like to fulfill.

A skills resume can also make employers suspicious. Why do you mainly emphasize your skills and competences? Do you have anything to hide?

A third disadvantage may be the unfamiliarity with the skills resume. There are employers who expect you to state your work experience in detail. Don't you do that. Then they immediately put your application aside. Unknown makes unloved after all.

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