Finding a job is never particularly easy. The ongoing pandemic as well as the economic challenges that it introduced means that job seeking in 2021 is more challenging than at many other times in recent history.
However, it’s not all bad – there are some easy things that you can do to stand out from all the other job seekers out there! Identifying key skills can be vital to convincing hiring managers that you’re qualified for the positions that they’re looking to fill.
While new skills are a great way of setting yourself out from the crowd, many people just don’t know where to start.
We can help by giving you a more clear definition of “technical skills”, as well as the best way to learn them. We’ll also highlight some of the best tech skills for building your resume today so you’re ready for your next job interview.
What Are Technical Skills?
You might have heard of “technical skills” before under the title “hard skills”.
Essentially, technical skills are capabilities that you have that allow you to perform tasks. They include a broad range of abilities, from those in tech and engineering to those in mechanics or math.
Technical, or hard skills, differ from soft skills, which are skills based around things like communication, customer service, or management skills. While soft skills are important, they need to be combined with the right technical skills to help you stand out from the crowd..
This is why technical skills are often included in job listings. There are many different roles that you simply can’t fill if you don’t have the right background.
Technical skills can therefore be a great way to retrain or to diversify your background. They’re the ideal way to ensure you can achieve a job in a brand new sector.
Now that you’re aware of what technical skills are, it’s important to know how to decide which skills to learn, and how to showcase them on your resume or LinkedIn profile.
Next, let’s list some of the most valuable tech skills for your job search today.
Learn To Code
One of the best places to start when it comes to learning technical skills today is by learning a new coding language. In fact, many argue it might just be the most important tech skill for any job today.
Coding languages, as you’ll know if you’ve worked in tech, are used for a lot of jobs today. Becoming proficient in code can land you a software development role, or help you tap into the video game industry.
Whatever your desires, if you want to work in tech, coding is a transferable skill that’s applicable to many, many different types of roles.
Coding can open up a whole range of new options for your career, and we’ve outlined the best programming languages to learn for 2021.
We recommend starting with the basics if you’ve never tried it before.
Introduction to Programming and Python
If you are new to programming, this course will help you understand the value of programming as a skill and why you might want to learn Python as opposed to some other programming languages.
Understand Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence
Understanding Artificial Intelligence, or AI, can be a strong way of evidencing your deeper understanding of technology today.
What started as a niche part of tech has grown to become one of the most important areas of the industry. These days, AI, Machine Learning, and automation can be used in almost every single business sector across every industry.
In the future, AI will become more important than ever. This makes it a particularly beneficial skill, as you can get one step ahead of your fellow job searchers.
Learning a skill in something like AI, with a proven growth, is a smart option. It can also include learning about real-world AI examples today, such as voice-assistants like Alexa.
Admittedly, this gets a bit more advanced than learning a coding language. With machine learning, you’ll first need to learn about core AI principles.
You’ll also need to research how AI is built, with what tools, and which frameworks. Finally, you’ll need to delve into both regression and classification once you’ve got a foundational understanding.
These are skills that are best undertaken by someone with a strong background in math or tech. Science and mechanics are also applicable backgrounds for learning more about AI.
Introduction to Artificial Intelligence
This course introduces you to the fundamentals of Artificial Intelligence. You will be implementing your first AI through a simple Tic-Tac-Toe game where you will be teaching the program on how to win against a human player. This course is part of the Applied Artificial Intelligence learning path – complete this path to get hands-on, practical experience of AI.
Build Skills in Cybersecurity and Blockchain
Cybersecurity is another increasingly important aspect of the tech industry. It’s reported that 2,200 cyber attacks occur around the world every single day.
That amounts to an insane statistic: a cyber-attack happens every 39 seconds.
Businesses and developers have been forced to understand new cybersecurity measures to prevent these attacks.
This also includes the concept of blockchain, which is another burgeoning industry in 2021. If you’re looking into cybersecurity skills, you’ll again need to begin with the foundations.
Once you understand the basics, you can start learning about identifying cybercrimes, as well as crime prevention. This involves aspects like system architecture, as well as systems hardening.
You might begin looking into current solutions, like penetration testing and next-generation firewalls.
Learning about cybersecurity can be particularly transferrable in relation to risk management. You’ll learn how to find problems, assess them, and come up with a solution.
In this respect, you’re learning both a hard skill and a soft skill at the same time. Cybersecurity is also another area that few people have specialized in, thanks to its relative newness. This makes it a great opportunity for an avid learner like you!
Our Cybersecurity Academy is taught by recognized industry experts, and also includes unlimited access to a live practice lab, so you can test your skills in a safe environment.
Learn Software Development and Project Management
That might sound as if there aren’t any more jobs to be taken up in the sector. But the truth is that software development is an employment option whose opportunities continue to grow.
There’s always a demand for new software developers from large tech companies and small startups alike.
So too is project management, which has transferable soft skills in the way of communication and leadership. If you’re interested in getting into project management, you should also learn about Agile.
Agile is a methodological framework that is followed by many project managers in software development today. Learning the rules behind Agile shows your understanding of how technology is built today. It can also prove that you know what it takes to manage a team and create real results.
Develop a Basic Understanding of Agile
To successfully manage and support an agile project, you first need a basic understanding of agile. In this course, we introduce the agile methodology, define an agile project, and discuss the Agile Manifesto and its founding principles. We cover each component of the agile project life cycle along with its iterative and adaptive project management approach. We will also discuss typical agile team roles and responsibilities and a reflection on how a project manager can emulate or support these roles. After completing this course, you will recognize and understand the agile context sufficiently to determine how you can best support the agile efforts within your organization.
Learn Cloud Computing
Cloud technologies is another area of tech skills you can develop today.
The cloud has become an impressive solution for individuals and businesses all across the world. It’s now the main way in which people save and retrieve data from their devices.
Understanding the cloud can be a great entry point into the tech industry. It’s best to first focus on the history of the cloud, as well as how it’s designed and delivered. If you’re interested in the business side of the cloud, it’s worth specifying this particular side of your skillset.
Companies may be in need of someone to optimize their cloud computing solutions. With the right background, these are the kind of jobs you can start applying for.
The cloud also combines some with an understanding of cybersecurity. This is because cloud security is one of the most important aspects of its design.
Learning about the cloud can therefore also help you in relation to system design and risk management. It can be a good place to dip your toe into learning new technical skills if you’re just starting out.
Cloud Computing Fundamentals
This course provides a foundation for understanding what the Cloud is and how it operates. You will learn what components make up the Cloud and we will discuss public cloud providers and how the cloud is being used across various industries.
Learn Data Analysis, Data Science and Data Visualization
The final technical skill we’re going to delve into today concerns data.
Ultimately, data drives all our technology today. That’s why an understanding of how it’s analyzed and created can be hugely beneficial for job seekers.
If you’re a visual learner, you may want to start with learning how data is visualized. This is how most employers receive data, so knowing how best to do this can be a great entry point.
For those with a computer science background, learning skills within data science may be a preferable way forward. This can include things like classification models, as well as some advanced coding techniques.
Data science is one of the most advanced technical skills we’ve listed, which makes it particularly attractive when job searching. Proving you have a background in data can apply to several tech and business positions.
It also provides you with core skills that can be transferable to other roles in marketing, management, and even finance.
Next Step: Start Learning
Now that you know some of the most popular technical skills to help you get noticed in your job search, it’s time to start learning!
Investing in yourself and your knowledge is never a bad investment. No matter what skill you choose, you’re building your own understanding of the changing world around you.
Our Foundation subscription is perfect for you to start learning – you get unlimited access to hundreds of expert-led, high-quality online classes that teach a broad range of tech skills.