12,000 employees and rising have been laid off by US tech companies as a result of cutbacks. It has arguably never been more important to set yourself apart from the – increasing – competition when it comes to finding new employment. Someone who may have been competing against 10 other applicants could now be competing with hundreds. Job seekers are left with the same question: What makes me more qualified? Three words – Highlight Transferable Skills.

There’s a fine line between adding transferable skills to your resume and being misleading so proceed with caution. When you think of transferable skills your mind may automatically go to things like, Excel, or Microsoft Word, and you wouldn’t be wrong. These are great tools to have in your belt, especially in a job search. However, there are many other skills that employers put at the top of their list when seeking qualified candidates to fill their open roles.

Work Experience

When adding work experience to your resume be sure to capture all responsibilities you may have assumed, even if it was not in your job description. For example, if your title was “Administrative Assistant” but you also helped with payroll, data entry, or updating spreadsheets – add that! Be sure your work experience is an accurate depiction of the work you did. Emphasize whether you withhold proficiency, working knowledge, or light experience to refrain from misleading potential employers.

Transferable Skill (Swaps)

Reviewing hundreds of resumes can be daunting, to say the least. Before adding “soft skills” to your resume like, “problem-solving skills, flexibility, and attention to detail” consider these “swaps” which highlight the action performed to obtain these skills.

“Problem Solving”         >        “Addressing customer inquiries/complaints” or “Identify potential issues and offer solutions”

“Flexible”                        >         Indicating that you performed duties outside of your job description suggests flexibility.

“Attention to Detail”    >        “Analyze data to ensure accuracy” or simply ensure your resume does not include spelling or grammatical errors


The “skills” section of your resume is the – more obvious – place to highlight transferable skills. Within this section, an employer should find any computer or software proficiencies as well as a synopsis of skills elaborated on in the “work experience” section of your resume. For example:

        Computer proficiencies: Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, Outlook, etc.

        Software Proficiencies: QuickBooks, SAP, ERP, etc.

        Additional Skills: Project management, Onboarding, Training & Development, Management, etc.


Your resume should indirectly tell a story of your work experience. Including transferable skills may be what sets you apart from your competition or it could make you suitable for multiple roles within the same company.


For further assistance in your job search please contact us at (518) 275-4816.