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Employability Skills

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Employability skills are a group of skills that you need to do any job well.

All employers look for applicants to jobs who have:

  • A range of employability skills - the skills you need to do any job well. These include a mixture of essential functional and personal skills. These are the skills that show employers that you would make a good employee.
  • Job-specific skills - these would depend on the job -  for example a games designer would need creative design and technical skills, whereas a doctor would need scientific, medical and technical skills. If you haven't got any job-specific skills yet don't panic, these are the skills that you mainly develop once you have finished full-time education and are doing a job.  Most employers are keen to offer training to the right person - for example as part of an Apprenticeship or a work-based training programme. The important bit is being willing to carry on learning once you leave school, college or university.
  • Qualifications - as they are evidence of personal, functional and employability skills.  

People with good employability skills are in short supply - so if you've got them you'll increase your chances of  success when you apply for a job. In a competitve job market - when lots of people are applying for jobs - employability skills are more important than ever before.

Why not find out:

Definitions used in this section are based on the report from the UKCES UK Commission for Employment and Skills - 'The Employability Challenge'  February 2009. THis report can be downloaded from the UKCES website.