Understanding Technical Skills for a Resume

Technical skills can help your resume look even better to a potential employer. How can you feature your technical skills effectively?


What Are Technical Skills?

Technical skills are the abilities, knowledge and expertise that allow individuals to do specific job-related tasks. While many people associate the term “technical skills” with STEM fields and roles, the truth is that there are technical skills involved in almost any job description. Whether you work in project management, want to be a data analyst, work in customer service or your expertise lies in information technology, your duties will include making use of technical skills.

Technical skills can be very niche or fairly common, but they all relate to the ability to undertake specific jobs and tasks. This is why certain technical skills will be listed as requirements for fulfilling a job role. Your main concern as a job seeker should be to make sure your resume and cover letter reflect the needs of the jobs that you are applying for. By ensuring that you list the right technical skills in the right way, you will increase your chances of getting a job interview.

How a Hiring Manager Will Understand Your Technical Skills

When considering your resume, a hiring manager will be looking for many different things. Technical skills will be high on their priorities list, right next to relevant work experience. As such, it is important that you list the right technical skills on your resume if you want to increase your chances of moving forward in the hiring process. Look over the job advertisement, take note of technical skills and tailor your resume to feature those skills, along with other relevant hard and soft skills.

Of course, there are optimal ways you can feature your technical skills on a resume that will catch hiring managers’ eyes. For example, rather than just listing your technical skills in your skills section, you can give examples of them in your work history section.

For example, you might showcase data analysis skills by stating:

  • “Collated social media site traffic and conversion data to provide insight into marketing and content scheduling weaknesses, resulting in changes that led to 9% rise in conversion rates and interactive engagement on all platforms.”

You can also mention achievements that tie in with your technical skills. Resume writing can be challenging, but there are plenty of resources out there that can be helpful. For example, ResumeHelp has a resume writing guide that will be very useful.

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Examples of Technical Skills To List on Your Resume

Technical skills vary by industry. The technical skills that are most relevant to your field of employment may be entirely different from those that are relevant to other fields. For example, software development is not entirely different from computer programming, but many of the technical skills involved are different. However, there are some technical skills that are widely applicable to many different fields of employment and roles. Here are some examples of technical skills commonly listed on resumes submitted to a number of different fields:

  • Writing and copy editing skills
  • Social media skills
  • Web development
  • Computer programming skills
  • Advanced mathematics skills
  • Graphic design skills
  • Java
  • Python
  • CSS
  • HTML
  • SEO (search engine optimization) skills
  • SEM (search engine marketing) skills
  • CRM (customer relationship management)
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft Excel
  • Adobe Photoshop
  • Technical writing
  • Digital marketing
  • Content management systems

Whether you work with operating systems or with people, there are specific skills employers will be looking for, and identifying them for your own resume is crucial. If you need some inspiration, review our resume examples for specific jobs and industries. Comparing the skills on the profiles of people who are further along your chosen career path, could be incredibly beneficial for creating the best resume possible.

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FAQ: Technical Skills

Q: Should I list all my technical skills on my resume?

There is no need to list all of your technical skills. Just focus on three or four of the strongest technical skills you have that match the skills required for the job position you are applying to. This leaves room for you to include other relevant hard and soft skills in your resume that you want to make the hiring manager aware of.

Q: How do I know what technical skills are best for my resume?

If you want to know which of your technical skills you should include on your resume, you should first review the job description and title. Look at the required competencies and qualifications as well as the keywords in the job posting. Highlight the areas where your soft and hard skills overlap with these needs.

Q: How do I prove my technical skills?

Whether your technical skills lie in JavaScript or data analysis, you can prove or support your skills section in a number of ways. First, you can prove your technical skills by listing any formal qualifications, certifications or awards you have earned. Second, you can provide examples of times when you have used your skills to complete a task successfully. For example, a piece of coding or a program you have made will prove proficiency in whichever programming languages you have used.

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