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The Most In-Demand Hard and Soft Skills of 2020

Source | business.linkedin.com | Bruce Anderson

Recruiters have a front-row seat to the ever-changing mix of skills most prized by the business world. Understanding what those skills are early on can give you a leg up on the competition. And while the soft skills valued by companies tend to change gradually, the most sought-after hard skills evolve lickety-split, pushed largely by the relentless transformation of modern technology.

Last year, cloud computing, artificial intelligence, and analytical reasoning led LinkedIn’s global list of the most in-demand hard skills. They’re all on the list again this year, but a skill we weren’t even looking at a year ago — blockchain — tops the list of most in-demand hard skills for 2020. 

And whether you’re looking to hire someone with blockchain chops or expertise in, say, video production (No. 10 on the list), you’ll be making sure your candidates have a desirable mix of soft skills as well. Our list of the most in-demand soft skills is headed by creativity, just as it was in 2018 and 2019. But slipping in at No. 5 is a newcomer, emotional intelligence, a skill important in just about every role.

What are hard and soft skills?

Hard skills concern an employee’s ability to do a specific task, and soft skills are more about the way they do them — how they adapt, collaborate, solve problems, and make decisions.

Hard skills include specialized knowledge and technical abilities, such as software development, tax accounting, or patent law expertise. They’re often easier to define and measure than soft skills.

Soft skills are more about behavior and thinking, personal traits and cognitive skills. They’re typically more difficult to measure, but they can also help a person thrive in a variety of roles and industries.

So, let’s take a look at the complete lists of the 10 most in-demand hard skills globally and the five most in-demand soft skills for 2020:

  • The Skills Companies Need Most in 2020  Top 5 Soft Skills 1. Creativity 2. Persuasion 3. Collaboration 4. Adaptability 5. Emotional intelligence  Top 10 Hard Skills 1. Blockchain 2. Cloud computing 3. Analytical reasoning 4. Artificial intelligence 5. UX design 6. Business analysis 7. Affiliate marketing 8. Sales 9. Scientific computing 10. Video production
Some companies see blockchain as a transformational technology

Blockchain has emerged from the once shadowy world of cryptocurrency to become a business solution in search of problems. Which means that you don’t have to be in financial services to be seeking new hires who have background and expertise in putting blockchain to use. So, recruiters should start becoming familiar with how blockchain works, what its perceived benefits are, and who are the people best suited to help your company explore where this budding technology might have a role.

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Source
business.linkedin.com
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