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‘Communication’ is the most sought after soft skill

Other popular soft skills include organisation, planning skills, flexibility and motivation

New data from job search engine Adzuna.co.uk revealed that when it comes to seeking out new employees, ‘Communication’ is the most sought after soft skill. 10.9% of ads mention ‘Communication’ within the job description, highlighting the value of showing off soft skills in both CVs and during interview processes.

‘Communication’, mentioned 116,261 times across the 1.1million job adverts analysed, was closely followed up ‘Organised’, mentioned 87,747 times (8.7%), and ‘Planning’ mentioned 83,322 times (7.8%), rounding off the top three most sought after soft skills for employment in the UK.

Job rolesTime stayedAverage salary
Enterprise Architect 7 years and 6 months£80,669
Machine Operator
5 years and 8 months £23,576
Shift Manager
4 years and 4 months £27,999
Team Leader and Director 3 years and 9 months £21,396, £45,405
Coach3 years and 7 months £36,118
Cashier and Shop Manager
3 years and 6 months £23,610, £25,253
Social Care Worker
3 years and 4 months £29,804
Cleaner Casual and Chief Executive Officer
3 years and 3 months £16,247, £42,673
Office Manager3 years and 2 months £33,025
Chief Marketing Officer 3 years and 1 month £46,712

Featured in the top ten soft skills were ‘Focused’, ‘Confidence’, ‘Customer service’, ‘Initiative’ and ‘Independent’: illustrating the range and variety of personable qualities that are in demand by employers.

The research discovered that Accounting and Finance, Healthcare and Nursing, and Teaching industries all have particular emphasises on specific soft skills. Communication is particularly sought-after in Accounting and Finance roles – 17% of job ads mention the term, compared to 10.9% of job ads across all industries. Furthermore, 14.9% of Healthcare and Nursing jobs require ‘Flexibility’, and 13.7% of Teaching jobs mention ‘Planning’, compared to only 7.8% across UK jobs in general.

Andrew Hunter, co-founder of Adzuna, comments:For job seekers, highlighting your soft skills alongside your hard skills will put you at an advantage when attempting to impress potential future employers. Hard skills give the technical elements for proficiency in a role and assist in meeting vocational requirements, however soft skills can often be more highly regarded than ticking the boxes of certain qualifications and workplace experiences. Companies are not just looking for a candidate who can do the job, but someone who will harmonise with the business and its pre-existing staff.

Within a job ad these sought after soft skills showcase not only a demand in what is required within the role, but can also be indicative to the company’s culture; of course be sure to showcase you can satisfy the qualifications for the role, but don’t overlook your ability and desire to fulfil the soft skills required too. A great way to assist in your job hunt is to use ValueMyCV, a tool we built to help job seekers understand their true monetary value to potential employers and suggests tips to optimise their CV.”

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