If you add in-demand abilities to your skillset, you can improve your chances of landing your dream job – particularly in a competitive job market.
But what skills will employers be looking for once the dust settles on the Covid-19 pandemic?
Here are 10 ways to boost your CV ready for the post-pandemic world.
If the pandemic has taught the business world one thing, it’s the importance of adaptability.
So being flexible and adaptable is likely to earn you major brownie points with prospective employers, both this year and in the future.
Even with more businesses planning to adopt remote working practices longer term, being willing to consider moving to another part of the country – or even another country altogether – will also give you the opportunity to apply for a wider variety of roles.
Managing people and teams remotely
This virtual AAT branch event will help you will learn how to successfully lead at a distance and keep remote teams engaged.
2. Technical skills
Working from home with no direct access to an IT support department means you need to know how to fix any computer issues that arise yourself. In other words, you need to be tech savvy to be a useful member of the team.
Consequently, taking the time to learn more about how your device work and familiarise yourself with popular technological solutions such as Microsoft Teams is likely to help you impress potential employers both now and after the pandemic.
If you like technology, you might also benefit from taking your studies to a higher level.
3. Cloud computing
Cloud computing was big news even before Covid-19 raised its head.
And with millions of employees now working remotely, tech such as Microsoft Teams and Google Docs has become integral to business success.
Companies of all kinds are therefore looking for people with cloud computing and security skills. Ways to increase your desirability in this area include taking a CCSP (Certified Cloud Security Professional) course, many of which can be completed online.
4. UX design
Lockdowns and shop closures have pushed consumers online more than ever before.
So user experience (UX) designers and developers, whose role is to support visitors to companies’ websites and ensure they get a positive impression, have become even more crucial to businesses of all shapes and sizes.
Whether you already work in design or you’re a complete beginner in the field, there are plenty of UX courses available – and many of them can be done remotely for free.
5. Emotional intelligence
Sometimes called interpersonal skills, your emotional intelligence level is measured by how you interact with other people.
And according to professional networking site LinkedIn, emotional intelligence became one of the five most sought after “soft” skills for the first time last year – alongside creativity, persuasion, collaboration, and adaptability.
Ways to work on improving it include evaluating how you react to stressful situations and considering how your actions will affect others before taking them.
6. PPC and affiliate advertising
Designed to drive traffic to a company’s website, pay-per-click (PPC) advertising is now one of the fastest-growing forms of marketing.
So learning how to ensure a PPC campaign reaches the right people will make you a valuable asset to businesses of all kinds.
Affiliate advertising, which involves nurturing relationships with partners that your target demographic already trusts, is also an increasingly important way to connect with customers wary of fake news and misinformation.
A quick online search will lead you to courses in both PPC and affiliate advertising from a range of providers.
7. AI skills
Companies can use artificial intelligence (AI), also known as machine learning, to analyse data on everything from what their customers want to how to better engage with their employees.
That’s why, according to analyst Research and Markets, the global machine learning market is forecast to grow from $1.41 billion in 2017 to $8.81 billion by 2022.
Therefore, signing up for some online AI training could prove a very sensible way to use your time during lockdown.
8. SEO expertise
Most employers have now realised they need a strong online presence to succeed.
And for this, they need individuals who understand search engine optimisation (SEO), or the process by making a website or webpage more visible on search engines such as Google.
Fortunately, there are lots of courses available to help you hone these skills, including online SEO courses you can access via LinkedIn.
9. Online fraud prevention
Taking all their operations online has opened many more companies up to the dangers of online – or cyber – fraud.
According to recent figures from insurance claims analyst Mactavish, 41% of UK businesses are more concerned about cyber attacks now then they were prior to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Online fraud prevention training could prove a worthwhile investment for your future career as a result.
10. Communication skills
With many more people now expected to spend at least some time working remotely, employers are recognising that their internal communications will need to be better than ever.
People who can interact well with others, motivate colleagues to work as a team, and bring new ideas to the table are therefore likely to be increasingly in demand.
Group activities such as sports teams and local associations can help you to develop these skills.
But under the current circumstances, taking an online communication course may be an easier alternative.
The skills employers are expected to seek post pandemic fall into two main categories: “hard”, mainly technical skills that will help them to operate and attract customers in a largely digital world, and “soft” skills such as effective communication and emotional intelligence.
Making the effort to boost your abilities in these areas now should help you to stand out from the crowd when you are ready to take your career to the next level.
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Jessica Bown is an award-winning freelance journalist and editor.