Did you know? Employers can search for specific skills when screening applicants on Handshake. They are potentially looking at hundreds of candidates’ profiles and resumes, and there can be a lot of competition, so you need to find ways to stand out among the crowd. The skills section is one place in Handshake where you can centralize what you’re good at, and use the key words that employers are looking for.
Start by taking a self-inventory by going through each work, internship or volunteer experience on your resume and write down the skills used in each position. Think about hobbies as well, because a Computer Science major who has a side video editing business, can also list “Adobe Premiere Pro” and “Quickbooks.” [Please do not add amateur hobbies, however if you have professional experience, then by all means, market yourself!]
Then, decide which from your list of skills are most related to the types of jobs you’re applying for. You can look at job descriptions for positions that interest you to know what kinds of skills they’re seeking. There’s no need to list every skill you have. Aim for fifteen or less.
Lastly, be truthful and don’t over-exaggerate. The last thing that you want is to be in an interview where you are not competent at the skills that you’ve claimed to have!
Here are three resources you can use to begin building your Skills Section. And of course, come visit us in the Career Center if you have questions and would like to schedule an appointment.
https://www.thebalance.com/employment-skills-listed-by-job-2062389 This article features hundreds of occupations. When you select one from the list, you’ll be taken to a page that specifically lists skills for that type of position. This is an excellent starting point.
https://www.linkedin.com/directory/topics-a/ This is a great resource in LinkedIn. This directory lists hundreds of options, and once you click on a specific skill—“Adobe Photoshop” for example— it will show you what top companies are using this skill. At the bottom of the section it shows “Top Skills,” which are similar and related skills, so that could be another place to see what might be relevant to add.
https://www.thebalance.com/top-skills-to-list-on-linkedin-2062321 Here’s a list from LinkedIn that are the most popular skills that employers seek.