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How to List Transferable Skills on Your CV


People navigating a career change often find themselves in a tight spot because of “lack of experience”. Now, when you’re transitioning to a new role or a new industry, it’s quite natural to not tick all the boxes in terms of having direct experience. But here’s your opportunity – your desired role will have common interpersonal skills if not technical skills and this is where transferable skills come into play.

Transferable skills are simply skills that are common between your current or old role and the new role you’re planning to apply for. For example, if you’re a Web Developer transitioning to a role like Project Manager, you definitely have communication, time management and problem solving skills, which are common in both roles. 

Do Recruiters Care About Transferable Skills?

Yes they do. Your transferable skills are what you bring to the table. For any role, transferable skills such as communication, teamwork, leadership, problem solving, time management are as valuable as technical skills. Demonstrating these skills can help you tackle objections, be a good starting point for addressing behavioural interview questions and give you extra pointers to make you stand out from the rest of the applicants. Transferable skills not only make you look good on paper, they actually convey that you will go the extra mile to achieve goals, and you can adapt to changes.

How Can I List Transferable Skills on My Resume/CV

1. Identify the Transferable Skills
Begin by conducting a thorough self-assessment to identify your transferable skills. These can include both soft skills like leadership, communication, and problem-solving, and hard skills such as data analysis, writing, or proficiency in a foreign language. Reflect on your career and personal experiences to compile a list of skills you’ve developed that can effectively contribute to a new role. It can be helpful to think about challenges you’ve overcome or projects where you’ve excelled.

2. Map the Skills According to the Job Description
Once you have your list, compare it against the job description of the position you’re applying for. Identify which skills are most relevant and likely to add value to the potential employer. This tailored approach not only highlights your suitability for the role but also demonstrates your attention to detail and genuine interest in the position. For each skill, consider how it directly applies to the tasks and responsibilities mentioned in the job listing.

3. Use the STAR Framework to Demonstrate Examples
To convincingly present your transferable skills, use the STAR (Situation, Task, Action, Result) framework to structure your examples. This method allows you to describe a specific situation and the task you were responsible for, followed by the action you took and the result of your efforts. For instance, if “problem-solving” is a transferable skill you wish to highlight, you could outline a situation where you resolved a significant challenge, explaining the steps you took and the positive outcome achieved. This approach not only showcases your skills but also provides concrete evidence of your capabilities.

Where to List Transferable Skills on My Resume/CV

Here are three strategic locations to list these transferable skills effectively:

1. Career Summary Section

The career summary section on the first page is an excellent place to make an immediate impact. Here, you can succinctly articulate how your accumulated experience and skills align with the job you’re applying for. A compelling career summary might look like this:

“With over [Years of Experience] years in [Industry/Field], I have honed my skills in [List of Transferable Skills], contributing to significant improvements in [Relevant Outcomes].”

This statement not only highlights your experience but also directly links your transferable skills with real results, making your application stand out right from the start.

2. Achievements on the Cover Page

The first page, or the top section of your resume, is ideal for spotlighting key achievements that demonstrate your transferable skills in action. Format this section with bullet points or a table that pairs each skill with a relevant accomplishment. For example:

  • Problem Solving: Streamlined the inventory process at ABC Warehouses, reducing waste by 20% and saving the company over $15,000 annually.
  • Leadership: Led a team of 10 in a project that increased company revenue by 30% within one year, acting as a Project Manager for A1 Logistics Australia.

By presenting your skills alongside impactful examples, you provide a snapshot of how valuable you can be to the organisation.

3. Work Experience Section

Under each role in your work experience section, particularly for positions that may seem unrelated to the job you are applying for, you can include a list of transferable skills that you demonstrated in that role. This can be a brief comma-separated list placed under the job title or integrated into the description of your responsibilities and achievements:

Job Title – Company Name
Month Year – Month Year

Achieved [X] by implementing [Y], demonstrating strong [Transferable Skill].

Transferable Skills: Leadership, Time Management, Client Relations

Including transferable skills in this detailed manner shows potential employers that regardless of the role or industry, you have consistently utilised your abilities to achieve success and make a positive impact.

If you’re having trouble articulating your experiences on paper, we’ve got you covered. Our expert CV Writers with 20+ years of experience know exactly how to position your transferable skills to make your professional history stand out. You can even book a FREE consultation on our website to discuss your questions with one of our team.

Ben Wood
Ben Wood

Career Coach, CV Writer, CV Writers + ITCV Writers Practice Manager - Tech and Executive Profile Specialist

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