I lack some of the job skills in a listing, should I apply?

It’s all too common to see a job posting that you are interested in, but think twice about applying because you feel that you lack the skills the company is looking for.  A company may have a list of requirements, and for very specific jobs, they may require a certain skill set or education.  As you look through a job posting, requirements, qualifications, nice-to-haves, bonus are all terms you may see in a listing.  So what do you do if you see a job you are interested in, yet lack the qualifications? Let’s talk about transferrable job skills.

Just apply for it anyway

You should apply!  More and more as we’ve moved into 2021, companies have shifted how they hire employees.  In fact, many companies are using metrics such as emotional intelligence to hire employees, rather than your ability to write a good resume, or meeting specific qualifications that they have laid out.  In my current job (which I applied to online), I lacked many of the skills that were supposedly “required.”  In fact, I had to look up several of the business management tools that were mentioned in the job posting because I had no clue what they were.  When I interviewed, I found out that it was important that I learn them, but it wasn’t required that I already knew how to use these complex systems.  Sometimes the easiest thing you can do is simply ask yourself “can I do this job?”

Identify transferrable job skills

Transferable skills are the skills that you have gained at a previous job that rollover nicely into a new position.  For instance, in a job posting currently on Corridor Careers, an employer is looking for someone who has the skill of “listening, problem solving, and running effective meetings.”  If a statement like this has held you back from applying because you don’t have one of these skills, I think you should reconsider.  Just about anyone who has worked in a service job has built skills like these before.  For instance, maybe you were a waiter or waitress in the past, and you really enjoyed it and were good at it.  You undoubtedly built skills such as listening to what customers ordered, helping customers if they weren’t sure what to get, and offered solutions to them based on what they may like.  This is how you build transferrable job skills.

What’s the worst case scenario?

You really have nothing to lose by applying to a job, and following up with the company.  The worst scenario is that they tell you no, and they are going with someone else.  By altering your attitude in how you search for and apply to jobs, you can alter your outcomes.

Looking to switch careers or not sure what the right path for you might be?  Check out our upcoming Career Week to help job seekers explore opportunities.

Career Fair and Job Success