5 Essential Soft Skills Examples To Look For In Recruits

Do you consider employees' soft skills during the hiring process?

5 Essential Soft Skills Examples To Look For In Recruits

Nearly 90% of recruiters in a LinkedIn Global Talent Trends Report said that newly hired employees don't stay at the company due to a lack of soft skills. Furthermore, the report also found that almost all employers prioritise soft skills over hard skills.

Learn about the essential soft skills examples recruiters should be looking for and how you can spot a potential hire who lacks these.

A Quick Look: What Are Soft Skills?

Soft skills are people or interpersonal traits and qualities that reveal the candidate’s competence to perform their duties.

These are how employees work, how they engage with others in the workplace, how they navigate the work environment, and how likely they are to achieve their goals. As such, these skills can help employees thrive.

Soft skills apply to every industry, job role, and seniority level.

Five Soft Skills Examples Recruiters Should Look For In A Candidate

There are five prominent soft skills that talent managers should assess when they sift through job applications:

Skill 1: Problem Solving

The ability to find solutions and solve problems is a critical soft skill that employees should have. While this skill is vital in all roles, it is particularly sought-after for those seeking a management position.

Employers also prefer employees who come up with creative ideas to address existing problems as this may lead to company-wide innovation and improvements.

Skill 2: Time Management

Soft Skills Employees Should Have

Whether your team works at the office or remotely, time management is always a priority. Potential employees who effectively manage their time can be productive, organise their schedules, and meet deadlines.

Skill 3: Communication

Communicating well is essential. Job candidates should be able to communicate clearly during the whole hiring process. They should also communicate across a multitude of platforms, from email, chat, and in-person to video or phone conference calls.

Skill 4: Growth Mindset

Another example of soft skills that recruiters look for is whether job applicants have a growth mindset.

Are they able to grow when there are changes in the workplace, industry, and job market? Will they be able to adapt to these changes? Are these professionals motivated to continuously learn new skills to keep up with the changes?

Skill 5: Emotional Intelligence (EQ)

A CareerBuilder survey found that more than 70% of employers prefer a higher EQ than IQ, and employees are also more promotable if they possess a higher EQ rating.

If an applicant has a high EQ, they can be empathic. They consider their own emotions and those of their co-workers, and this awareness guides their interactions and decision-making.

How To Spot A Job Candidate Who Doesn’t Have The Essential Soft Skills

Identifying a candidate's soft skills is not easy. Recruiters need to be trained to recognise these essential skills during the hiring process.

Here are three ways to spot whether a job seeker has the soft skills you are on the lookout for:

Personality Traits In Employees

CV and Cover Letter

While a job applicant can write about the soft skills they possess in their CV and cover letter, this isn't proof. However, their CV may be an excellent indicator to shortlist candidates.

Don’t accept CVs if an applicant merely lists their soft skills. They should show you how they have used their people qualities and what they have achieved.

The same applies to their cover letter. Here, they have the opportunity to elaborate and share a story about how they've used a soft skill or two and how this makes them the ideal candidate to fill the vacancy.

Job Interviews and Job-Fit Assessments

Talent managers can use interviews to identify and assess the candidate’s soft skills examples. Observe whether the candidate looks you in the eye during the interview. See how well they communicate and how evasive they are by examining their reactions and answers during the interview.

Ask specific soft-skill and behaviour questions that reveal the people skills your interviewee may possess. To test specific qualities, you can use activities, hypothetical scenarios, and games.

You can also request that they list or rank their soft skills. This will indicate which qualities the candidates have and believe to be part of their strengths. It will also reveal whether these listed and ranked skills form part of their repertoire and the skills required for the position.

Artificial intelligence and machine-learning platforms can also help you assess a candidate’s soft skills during the interview and assessment process.

Job Fit Assessments

Check References

The references an applicant lists on their CV is a vital source to help you verify the information and gain feedback on the candidate's soft skills. You can ask them several questions:

  • What was it like working with the potential employee?
  • How did they get along with their co-workers?
  • How did they perform during stressful situations?

Source Your Best Talent With &Team

&Team's talent experience management platform offers you the opportunity to include the essential soft skills your job needs when you write your job descriptions. Moreover, you can utilise our built-in assessments and job interviewing features to spot whether potential candidates possess the soft skills examples you are after.

Contact us and schedule a demo for more information.