Many jobs involve having a set of technical skills. If you’re applying for a job which requires them it is essential to include technical skills on your resume to show the employer that you are able to do the job.
What are technical skills? A technical skill is an ability to perform a specific task which requires specialist knowledge. One example of a technical skill is programming: it is an ability which you have to learn and develop.
Technical skills are also known as ‘hard skills‘ and you normally learn them either on-the-job or they involve training. There is a vast range of different types of technical skills. Skills which are not technical and are related to personality, such as communication skills, are called ‘soft skills’.
Examples of technical skills in demand: accounting, coding, computer skills, data analytics, data mining, design, engineering, marketing, photography, plumbing, programming, project management, SEO, training, and quality control.
What is the difference between ‘tech skills’ and ‘technical skills’? The two terms are often used interchangeably but there is a difference. ‘Tech skills’ refer to IT skills or abilities associated with digital technology. ‘Technical skills’ include a broader range of abilities. For example, accounting is a technical aptitude but not a tech skill. Web design falls under both categories.
How to include technical skills on your resume
Sometimes a job involves having a list of technical skills. In these cases, it is important to clearly demonstrate you have all of them. For more specific technical jobs based on a particular skill, it is much simpler to demonstrate.
For example, if you are a web designer with 15 years of experience, it will be clear that you have this skill from a quick glance at the professional experience section of your resume. Jobs involving a range of skills will require you to include examples of when you’ve demonstrated each one.
This means that you should tailor your resume for each job application if the technical skills vary. The quickest way to do this is to use a resume builder which allows you to make quick edits. Here are some tips on how to effectively include technical skills on your resume template.
Identify the required technical skills
The first thing to do is to carefully read through each job description and to identify the necessary technical skills. Use the keywords in the job posting to help you. It is important to know exactly which skills the employer is looking for so you know what to focus on when tailoring your resume. The next step is to write a list of your strengths and match them to the needs of the job.
Work the technical skills into your resume
You have a number of options regarding where to include your technical skills. You can have a skills section on your resume and include a short paragraph for each point describing when you’ve demonstrated the skill.
Alternatively, you can include examples of your technical skills in the descriptions of your past job positions. If you are writing a student resume your education section will feature prominently and you can highlight your technical skils here.
Be concise and don’t exaggerate
The challenge when writing a resume is to include as many selling points as possible in as little space as possible. It is best to produce a one-page resume so include your technical skills but remember to leave space for other things. Avoid wordy descriptions as employers don’t want to wade through them.
Write you technical skills without exaggerating. Over-emphasizing your list of abilities can work against you as the employer may see through it and start questioning other parts of your resume.
Highlight the key technical skills in your cover letter
You can use your cover letter to highlight the most important technical skills the employer is looking for. See it as an extra opportunity to plug your skills. In the main body of the letter, mention two or three of the key skills and give examples of when you’ve demonstrated them.