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Hiring for Transferable Skills? Here's How.

Most hiring managers look for candidates that have relevant experience in their field. They usually believe that recruiting people with industry-specific talents will ensure that new employees will be up and running a lot faster. However, hiring employees with the appropriate industry expertise may seem like a great option, but your organisation could miss out on great talent with the right transferable skills.

Here at Talented Recruitment Group, we discuss why hiring for transferable skills is critical for organisations, how you can do it, and what to look out for when recruiting.

What are transferable skills?

When you think about the skills that are needed for success in a particular job, most people will often think about specific technical skills or abilities that are required to perform the tasks that are associated with the role. However, there's also several non-technical or transferable skills that are just as important, if not more so.

Transferable skills are those that can be applied to many different situations and can be adapted to new environments and new challenges. These are the skills that help us to interact effectively with others, as well as solving problems, manage our time and resources, and even adapt to change.

Since technical skills may be specific to a particular role or industry, transferable skills can be much more universal - basically meaning that they can be valuable in a wide range of jobs and career paths. For example, if you have great communication skills, you'll be able to communicate effectively regardless of the industry or role you're in.


To put it simply, transferable skills are skills that can be used in a variety of different situations and contexts - meaning that they're highly adaptable, making them an extremely valuable asset in any workplace.

One of the most important transferable skills that companies need to look for is communication. Communication is essential in any workplace, as it helps to build relationships, whilst fostering collaboration. Those who have stronger communication skills can effectively convey their ideas and thoughts, whilst also being able to listen attentively.

Another transferable skill that companies need to value is teamwork. Those who can work well in a team environment are usually a lot more productive and successful in comparison to those who prefer to work solely on their own.

How to attract talent with transferable skills.

It may be surprising to some to learn that many of the best candidates for a particular job might not have all the required skills you're looking for. However, what they do have is a strong foundation of transferable skills that can be applied to most industries and job roles. Here are some of our top tips for you to consider when looking for talent:

  1. Define the skills you need - One of the first steps is to try and clearly define the skills that are needed for the role. What specific skills would make someone succeed in the role? When assessing your candidates, be sure to identify which skills are most important for the job in question. Once you have a clear understanding of the skills required, you can start to look for candidates who have them.

  2. Look for candidates with a proven track record - When you're looking at potential candidates, it's crucial to look for those with a proven track record of success in roles that need transferable skills. Search for candidates who have previously been successful in their past roles that required them to quickly adapt to a new environment and situations. It's not just about having the correct skills; you also need to consider whether the candidate will be a good fit for your company culture. Would they be a good match for your team? Would they mesh well with your existing company culture?

  3. Highlight your company's company culture and values - Your company's culture and values will be seen as a major attraction for transferable talent. Candidates will want to know that they'll be a good fit for your organisation, so it's essential that you communicate this clearly. Culture is one of the most important factors that candidates consider when choosing their next move with a job, as they want to work for an organisation with similar values. When you have a strong culture, this shows through your employees - they're often more engaged and passionate about their work, which means they'll most likely stay with your organisation for the long haul.

  4. Offer training and development - Make sure you outline the potential growth opportunities that exist for potential employees at your company, as most transferable talent will be looking to learn and grow.

  5. Look beyond the traditional CV - When you're reviewing CV's, don't just focus on candidates’ job titles and duties - instead, look for candidates who have been able to develop their transferable skills though their previous experiences.

The key benefits for your company.

Hiring candidates with transferable skills is a great way to add value to your organisation. Not only can they bring their own unique set of skills and experience, but they can also adapt and learn to do new things quickly. This is seen as a major asset in today's ever changing business landscape. Below are some of the key benefits that hiring candidates with transferable skills can bring to your company:

  • They can make employees more adaptable to change in any situation and environment.

  • These candidates are typically good at problem solving, as they're thinking for the most suitable solution when facing challenges.

  • Transferable skills can make employees more productive than those without them.

  • They can help employees to become better leaders and team players in the long run.

  • Ultimately, transferable skills will help employers to create a more well-rounded and productive workforce.

Now is the best time to hire the "right people" with the right skills to future proof your company in the times of economic uncertainty. Here at Talented Recruitment Group, we believe the importance of hiring people with transferable skills will come to the forefront in the next coming months. By doing this, organisations will be well-placed to take advantage of new opportunities, as well as having the ability to adapt to change, remain flexible, stay competitive in the market, and continue to thrive in the ever-changing world of work in any market.

Let us know your thoughts on this topic!

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