60+ Transferable Skills for Your Resume

Transferable skills show employers you can succeed in a role even if you don’t have direct or recent experience. Read on for examples of the best transferable skills and how to add them to your resume.

Certified Professional Resume Writer (CPRW)
by Eric Ciechanowski  Certified Professional Resume Writer (CPRW) 
March 20, 2023 

What are transferable skills?

Transferable skills are those acquired during your education, internships or work experience that you bring to future jobs.

These skills are a way to demonstrate you can succeed at a job even if your work history isn’t an exact match for the position at hand.

They can include both hard skills and soft skills.

hard skill icon

Hard Skills

Examples of transferable hard skills:

  • Experience with computer programs
  • Management experience
  • Proficiency in another language
  • Typing
soft skill icon

Soft Skills

Examples of transferable soft skills:

  • Critical thinking
  • Written and verbal communication
  • Problem-solving
  • Organizational skills

Top 10 transferable skills

The skills you include on your resume should reflect the employer’s needs mentioned in the job post or ad.

According to our research, these are the transferable skills most requested by employers:

  • Problem-solving
  • Critical thinking
  • Leadership
  • Adaptability
  • Teamwork
  • Communication
  • Attention to detail
  • Project management
  • Relationship building
  • Computer skills

Why should I include transferable
skills on my resume?

Transferable skills help you market yourself to employers, and listing them on your resume is an excellent way for them to see at a glance what you’ll bring to the table if hired.

For instance, if you’re a former teacher applying for a customer service job or office support role, your resume should include transferable skills like strong communication and leadership.

These skills you developed in the classroom could transfer to a new customer service role.

So, if you’re ready to add transferable skills to your resume, check out our most powerful tool, our Resume Builder.

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Who needs transferable skills?

Transferable skills are crucial if you don’t have direct experience related to the job you seek.

Including transferable skills on a resume is especially important for individuals changing jobs or moving to different fields altogether.

They’re also critical for recent college graduates with little to no work experience and those who’ve been out of the workforce for a while.

If you’re one of these job seekers, it’s crucial to include transferable skills on your resume.

For example, a new college grad who worked as a campus tour guide while in college has developed solid communication skills and customer service skills while leading prospective students and families on guided tours. These skills apply to various customer-facing roles, such as hostess, customer service rep, and tech support, among many other examples.

Adding transferable skills to your resume

Add transferable skills toward the top of your resume, underneath the summary section. Present them as a bulleted list and consider giving it the title “Core Qualifications” or simply “Skills.”

To help you get started, review the comprehensive lists of transferable skills below, divided into common categories to help you pick out the ones you need.

Transferable skills: communication

This term refers to the expression, transmission and interpretation of knowledge and ideas and includes these specific skills:

  • Speaking effectively
  • Writing concisely
  • Listening attentively
  • Expressing ideas
  • Facilitating group discussion
  • Providing appropriate feedback, either independently or when asked
  • Negotiating
  • Perceiving nonverbal
  • Persuading others
  • Reporting information
  • Describing feelings
  • Interviewing

Transferable skills: research and planning

This list includes your ability to conceptualize future needs, your solutions for meeting those needs, and your search for specific knowledge required for completing a task.

  • Forecasting and predicting
  • Creating ideas
  • Identifying problems
  • Imagining alternatives
  • Identifying appropriate resources
  • Gathering information
  • Solving problems
  • Setting goals
  • Extracting important information
  • Defining needs and requirements
  • Analyzing information
  • Developing evaluation strategies

Transferable skills: interpersonal skills and human relations

These refer to your ability to work well with others, especially when it involves conflict resolution or problem-solving.

  • Developing rapport with coworkers and customers
  • Being sensitive to others
  • Listening
  • Conveying feelings appropriately
  • Providing support for others
  • Motivating others
  • Sharing credit with colleagues
  • Counseling
  • Cooperating
  • Delegating with respect
  • Representing others
  • Accurately perceiving feelings or situations
  • Asserting

Transferable skills: creative thinking skills

This list includes competencies related to thinking outside-the-box or being flexible. You might need to spot patterns in the information you’re analyzing, for instance, or devise a new solution to an ongoing problem.

  • Demonstrating cognitive flexibility
  • Conceptualizing situations
  • Showing curiosity
  • Being imaginative
  • Predicting and anticipating shortfalls
  • Showing foresight
  • Making abstract connections
  • Making inferences
  • Synthesizing ideas

Transferable skills: organization, management and leadership skills

These skills relate to your ability to supervise, direct and guide individuals and groups in the completion of tasks and fulfillment of goals.

  • Initiating new ideas
  • Handling details
  • Coordinating and planning tasks
  • Managing groups
  • Delegating responsibility to others
  • Teaching
  • Counseling
  • Coaching
  • Promoting change
  • Selling ideas or products
  • Decision making with others
  • Managing conflict
  • Following through on tasks
  • Multitasking
  • Demonstrating effective time management

Transferable skills: work survival skills

These are the day-to-day, nitty-gritty skills that assist in promoting effective production and work satisfaction.

  • Making and implementing decisions
  • Cooperating
  • Enforcing policies or established rules
  • Punctuality
  • Managing time wisely
  • Attending to detail
  • Meeting goals, both short-term and long-term
  • Enlisting the help of others when you need it
  • Accepting responsibility
  • Setting deadlines and meeting them
  • Organizing

Whether you’re jumping back into the workforce, are a recent college grad or exploring a new career path, you’ll get better results and callbacks for jobs when you include transferable skills on your resume.

Don’t miss out on the opportunity to impress a prospective employer with the talents and aptitudes you’ve developed over the years. Transferable skills just might tip the scales in your favor and earn you your next dream job!

About the Author

Eric Ciechanowski

Eric Ciechanowski Certified Professional Resume Writer (CPRW)

Eric Ciechanowski is a Certified Professional Resume Writer (CPRW), certified by the Professional Association of Resume Writers and Career Coaches (PARWCC). He graduated from Tulane University in New Orleans with a B.A. double major in Creative Writing and Philosophy. His career background includes fields as diverse as education, hospitality, journalism, copywriting, tech and trivia hosting.

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