3 things you should know about transferable skills and CVs

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1) Vital ingredient

Another ‘buzzphrase’ that’s evolved from HR fad to career management essential, ‘transferable skills’ can hold the key to getting jobs for which you otherwise wouldn’t have been considered. Any skill you’ve acquired while performing one task that would be of equal use doing another is technically transferable – and should be included on your CV. Don’t just think about your current or previous jobs: hobbies, sports, and voluntary work can all provide transferable skills if you think hard enough. 

2) Transfer market

Can you actually do the job? Examine every aspect of your career to date and ask yourself how the skills you’ve developed could be applied to the jobs you find appealing. It’s especially important if you’re making a significant change, such as crossing from the public to private sector (or vice versa) or from mainstream accounting to an associated role (such as training, recruitment, or IT systems sales). Think laterally – how might your non-work activities equip you for that dream job?

3) Back it up

It’s no use tucking your transferable skills away on the last page of your CV. They need to speak out, loud and clear. Include a punchy outline of what they are and why they would enable you to deliver on the job as part of your e-mail or letter (although don’t say ‘transferable’ – accountants don’t always welcome ‘HR-speak’). Most crucially, should you land an interview, be ready to hammer your point home by supporting your case with lucid examples of just how transferable those skills are. 

This article was first published in Student Accountant

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