What are the most vital skills required in today’s fast-paced, rapidly changing work environment? It’s a question that gnaws at employers and employees alike.
Professional networking site LinkedIn offers insights with a new study. In a report, the platform has parsed data from its network of more than 660 million professionals and over 20 million jobs to reveal the 15 most in-demand skills for 2020.
Curated by LinkedIn Learning, the list contains the top 5 soft skills and top 10 hard skills. This year’s most in-demand soft skills list indicates that companies are inclined towards talent with interpersonal and people-oriented skills, LinkedIn said in a statement.
While task-oriented skills remain critical for success at work, the data shows that employers are giving equal importance to soft skills that play a critical role. As a result, Emotional Intelligence is the new entry to this year’s top soft skills list.
Among hard skills, LinkedIn said blockchain is the new entrant and has made it to the top of the list. This is indicative of increasing awareness and demand for its wider — and lucrative use — that help securely store and send any digital asset, according to LinkedIn. The small supply of professionals who have this skill are in high demand, it said.
Here are LinkedIn’s 15 most in-demand skills in 2020:
The Soft Skills Companies Need Most in 2020
Organisations require people who can creatively approach problems and tasks across all business roles. This ranges from software engineering to HR. LinkedIn advises recruits to focus on honing their ability to bring new ideas to the table in 2020.
Leaders and recruitment managers place a premium on individuals who can explain the “why.” To advance careers, candidates must brush up on their ability to effectively communicate ideas and persuade colleagues and stakeholders that it’s in their best interest to follow their lead.
More than individuals, it is high-functioning teams that can accomplish more for a business. Organizations need no telling. Learn how your strengths can complement those of your colleagues to reach a common goal.
As they say, the only constant in life—and in business—is change. To stand out in 2020, candidates must embrace that reality and make sure to show up with a positive attitude and open-minded professionalism, especially in stressful situations, according to LinkedIn.
5) Emotional Intelligence
Emotional intelligence is the ability to perceive, evaluate, and respond to your own emotions and the emotions of others. New to LinkedIn's most in-demand skills list this year, the need for emotional intelligence highlights the importance of effectively responding to and interacting with our colleagues.
The Hard Skills Companies Need Most in 2020
While the most in-demand soft skills are all about how people work together, the most in-demand hard skills are the ones changing, and rapidly at that, and what people must be working on.
Many of these skills will continue to evolve swiftly. For example, for the first time this year, blockchain not only made the list of top skills, but also topped it—underscoring an increasing awareness and demand for the wider applications of this skill.
Trending data also reveals that data-driven decision-making skills like business analysis (#6), which has risen ten spots from last year, are essential in today’s workforce. As companies continue to collect and analyse an unprecedented level of data, they require people who can help interpret and take action on that data to drive growth for their business.
The top 10 most in-demand hard skills are:
Blockchain was born in 2009 to support the use of cryptocurrency. But blockchain’s novel way to store, validate, authorise, and move data across the internet has evolved to securely store and send any digital asset. The small supply of professionals who have this skill are in high demand, according to LinkedIn.
2) Cloud Computing
A vast swathe of companies today are built and run on the cloud. They need talent who have the skills to help them drive technical architecture, design, and delivery of cloud systems like Microsoft Azure.
3) Analytical Reasoning
Data has become the foundation of every single business. Organisations want talent who can make sense of it and uncover insights that drive the best decisions for the business, said LinkedIn.
4) Artificial Intelligence
Artificial intelligence (AI) augments the capabilities of the human workforce. The people who can harness the power of AI, machine learning, and natural language processing are the ones who will help organisations deliver more relevant, personalised, and innovative products and services.
5) UX Design
As average attention span of consumers decreases every year, they have little patience for products that aren't intuitive. Enter UX Design. Organisations need more expertise to help them build more human-centric products and experiences.
6) Business Analysis
Business analysis made the most significant jump of any skill on the LinkedIn list. It's one of the few hard skills every professional should have, as most roles require some level of business analysis to make decisions.
7) Affiliate Marketing
With the decline of traditional advertising and the rise of social media, affiliate marketing is rapidly rising as a must-have hard skill. Affiliate marketing leverages company partnerships or influencers that are hyper-targeted to a particular audience.
You will find it hard to zero in on a company that doesn’t need great sales people—those who can effectively manage a sales team, understand the sales funnel, work with cross-functional partners, and sell into the highest levels of the business.
9) Scientific Computing
Scientific computing skills are held by data science professionals, engineers, and software architects, and others. Companies need more professionals that can develop machine learning models and apply statistical and analytical approaches to large data sets using programs like Python, MATLAB, and others.
10) Video Production
Consumers have an insatiable appetite for video content, so it makes sense that video production continues to be a priority for companies. Cisco estimates that video will account for 82% of global internet traffic in 2022.
First Published: IST