Today, 87% of employers have difficulty finding the right employees. That’s a significant percentage, and it’s all because of skill gaps.
Hiring managers aren’t entirely sure if someone fits the job well because the crucial information isn’t exactly front and center. Sometimes, it’s not there, making it even worse.
Good thing this article breaks down the best hard skills for resumes, explains why they matter, and tells you how to showcase them best.
So whether you’re just starting your career or looking for a fresh start, this guide will help you make a good impression on potential employers.
What are hard skills?
Technically, your hard skills are actions you must complete to get things done on any given day. They are skills that you pick up over time, throughout your career, and eventually consider muscle memory.
This could be through routine tasks, on-the-job training, or even continued education funded by the company.
Whatever the case, hard skills are essential because they allow potential employers to see what you can do quickly. It saves everyone time, including you.
How to Showcase Hard Skills on Your Resume
Showing off your hard skills on your resume is necessary to stand out. Unfortunately, most resumes fall flat — only 59% focus on hard skills. Here are some tips for showcasing your hard skills on your resume.
1. Tailor your resume to the job description.
It seems obvious, but you must tailor your resume to fit the job. Otherwise, hiring managers will gloss over your resume, like the other 54% of job applicants who don’t tailor their resumes for each employer or position.
So look for the hard skills mentioned in the job posting and show off your experiences that match up. Use keywords from the job description so employers can quickly see you have the chops for the position.
2. Use bullet points to showcase your hard skills.
Using bullet points is a great way to make your skills pop on your resume. Keep it clear and snappy when you talk about your skills and achievements, and throw in some numbers to show off the impact of your hard skills.
This gives employers solid proof of what you can do.
3. Include specific examples of how you've used your hard skills.
Share specific examples of how you've put your hard skills to work in past roles or projects. This helps show you know your stuff and gives a bit of background on your accomplishments.
For instance, if you're a pro with a certain software program, talk about how you used it to nail a tricky project or make a process run smoother.
4. Provide evidence of your hard skills through certifications and training.
If you have certificates from training programs, pop them on your resume to back up your hard skills and show you're all about growing and learning. This will highlight the relevant skills needed for the job.
Remember, putting your hard skills front and center on your resume is critical to showing potential employers you're the real deal. Follow these tips to make sure your hard skills get noticed by recruiters and hiring managers.
Hard Skills to Show on Your Resume
1. Programming Languages
Programming skills like Python, Java, and C++ are highly valuable in today's tech industry. Employers are looking for candidates with specific expertise, so include this skill if it’s relevant to your position.
Best for: Software developers, data analysts, and IT professionals.
Pro tip: Provide specific examples of projects you've worked on using each language to demonstrate your proficiency.
2. Data Analysis
The ability to analyze data is becoming increasingly important across various industries, so showcasing this hard skill can help you when applying for similar positions in different industries.
Best for: Data analysts, business analysts, and marketing professionals.
Pro tip: Demonstrate your data analysis skills by sharing examples of how you've used data in the past.
3. Project Management
Proficiency in project management software such as Asana, Trello, and Jira can effectively showcase your ability to manage tasks, timelines, and resources. For companies who use this software, the time they will need to invest in your training will be substantially less if you already know how to use them.
Best for: Project managers, team leaders, and coordinators.
Pro tip: Provide examples of successful projects you've managed, including the scope, timeline, and outcomes achieved.
4. Graphic Design
Whether or not your primary role was graphic design, the ability to create visually appealing designs for various mediums using Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign is worth sharing on your resume. Be sure to mention which programs you’re proficient in.
Best for: Graphic designers, web designers, and marketing professionals.
Pro tip: Include your best design work portfolio to showcase your skills and creativity.
5. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Excellent skills in SEO tools and techniques can improve your website's visibility and traffic. Elaborate on the specific aspects of SEO you’re an expert in to display how your skills match the company’s needs.
Best for: Digital marketers, web developers, and content creators.
Pro tip: Highlight successful SEO campaigns you've managed, including increased traffic, higher rankings, and improved conversion rates.
6. Public Speaking
Public speaking skills demonstrate your ability to present ideas, persuade, and engage audiences. Considering that most people fear public speaking, it’s valuable for you to share this skill if you can use it in your workplace.
Best for: Sales professionals, executives, and educators.
Pro tip: Describe specific presentations you've delivered, including the topic, audience, and outcomes.
7. Financial Analysis
Financial analysis skills can demonstrate your ability to interpret and analyze financial statements and make informed decisions. This skill is vital if your role has any connection to finances.
Best for: Financial analysts, investment bankers, and accounting professionals.
Pro tip: Provide examples of financial analyses you've conducted, such as financial modeling, forecasting, and trend analysis.
8. Social Media Marketing
Social media marketing proficiency demonstrates your ability to create and implement effective campaigns that boost brand awareness, engagement, and conversions.
With over 93% of businesses on social media, this skill is critical for most marketing strategies.
Best For: Digital marketers, social media managers, and PR professionals.
Pro Tip: Include examples of successful social media campaigns you've managed, including increased followers, engagement rates, and conversions.
HTML/CSS knowledge demonstrates your ability to design and develop websites. Most customers first discover a company or brand online, but many small businesses still don’t have websites.
This is an excellent skill if you’re looking to improve existing sites or help small businesses launch one.
Best for: Web developers, UX designers, and digital marketers.
Pro tip: Provide examples of websites you've designed or developed, including the coding languages and tools you used.
10. Email Marketing
An understanding of email marketing can demonstrate your ability to design and execute effective campaigns that drive engagement and conversions.
Email marketing remains a core channel for brands to reach their audience, so highlight this skill if it’s part of your background.
Best for: Digital marketers, email marketing managers, and e-commerce professionals.
Pro tip: Highlight successful email campaigns you've managed, including open rates, click-through rates, and conversion rates.
Sales experience demonstrates your ability to prospect, pitch, negotiate, and close deals.
Sales is a complex process that includes many skills, so be sure to name specific ones, such as product and policy knowledge, the ability to prospect, pitch, and qualify leads, and your research skills.
Best for: Sales professionals, business development managers, and entrepreneurs.
Pro tip: Give specific examples of successful sales campaigns and deals you've closed, including revenue generated and customer satisfaction.
12. UX/UI Design
Proficiency in UX/UI Design can showcase your ability to create visually appealing and easy-to-use user-centered designs.
Best for: UX/UI designers, web designers, and product managers.
Pro tip: Provide examples of designs you've created, including wireframes, prototypes, and final designs.
13. Video Production
Creating high-quality video content that tells compelling stories and engages audiences shows video production proficiency. Be specific when listing the skills you have surrounding this process.
Best for: Video producers, filmmakers, and marketing professionals.
Pro tip: Include your best video work portfolio to showcase your skills and creativity.
14. Content Creation
Knowledge of content creation can demonstrate your ability to write, edit, and produce blogs, articles, videos, and social media posts.
Mention the types of content you’ve made and the fields you’ve created content for so hiring managers can see if your experience is a good fit.
Best for: Content creators, copywriters, and digital marketers.
Pro tip: Share examples of content you've created, including the topic, audience, and outcome.
Leadership skills demonstrate your ability to inspire, motivate, and guide teams. Be sure to back this up with evidence in your resume and compelling anecdotes in your interview.
Best for: Managers, executives, and team leaders.
Pro tip: Give specific examples of teams you've led, including the challenges faced, the accomplishments, and the impact.
16. Mobile App Development
A solid understanding of mobile app development allows you to design projects for various platforms. Apps are competing to be one of the main ways customers connect with businesses, so there are many promising job opportunities with these skills.
Best For: Mobile app developers, software engineers, and product managers.
Pro Tip: Provide examples of mobile apps you've developed, including the coding languages and tools you used.
17. Event Planning
Experience in event planning can demonstrate your ability to plan, coordinate, and execute successful conferences, trade shows, and fundraisers. Events can be complex, so showing yourself to be an efficient and effective planner is important.
Best for: Event planners, marketing professionals, and project managers.
Pro tip: Describe specific examples of events you have planned, including their scope, timeline, and results.
18. Data Mining
Proficiency in data mining can demonstrate your ability to extract valuable insights and patterns from large datasets.
Best for: Data analysts, data scientists, and business analysts.
Pro tip: Highlight successful data mining projects you've managed, including the insights gained and the impact on the organization.
19. Digital Advertising
Knowledge of digital advertising can demonstrate your ability to create and manage effective online advertising campaigns, such as Google Ads or Facebook Ads. Be sure to mention your specific areas of expertise.
Best for: Digital marketers, PPC managers, and advertising professionals.
Pro tip: Include examples of successful digital advertising campaigns you've managed, including the click-through rates, conversion rates, and ROI.
20. Network Administration
Maintaining, configuring, and troubleshooting computer networks and systems can demonstrate your expertise in network administration.
Best for: Network administrators, IT support specialists and system administrators.
Pro tip: Explain the tools and technologies you used to perform network administration tasks.
21. Email Management
Email management skills demonstrate your ability to handle incoming and outgoing messages efficiently. This is an essential skill for jobs that require dealing with a large volume of emails daily, especially for interacting with clients.
Best for: Administrative assistants, customer service representatives, and virtual assistants.
Pro tip: Talk about how you managed large volumes of emails, prioritized tasks, and responded to customers.
22. Search Engine Marketing (SEM)
Understanding SEM can demonstrate your ability to manage Google and Bing Ads campaigns.
SEM can be an important part of companies’ marketing strategies, so having experts who can create suitable ads and navigate bidding is key to their success.
Best for: Digital marketers, PPC managers, and advertising professionals.
Pro tip: Include examples of successful SEM campaigns you've managed, including the click-through rates, conversion rates, and ROI.
23. Database Administration
Proficiency in database administration can demonstrate your ability to design, implement, and maintain databases to store and organize large amounts of data.
Best for: Database administrators, data analysts, and IT professionals.
Pro tip: Give details about the database projects you have managed, including their size, technology, and performance.
24. Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
CRM skills demonstrate your ability to organize and analyze customer data and create targeted marketing campaigns. They are essential for companies to improve customer communication and grow their business.
Best for: Sales professionals, customer service representatives, and marketing professionals.
Pro tip: Highlight specific CRM tools and techniques, and provide examples of successful campaigns you've managed.
25. Statistical Analysis
A solid understanding of statistical analysis can demonstrate your ability to analyze data and extract meaningful information.
Best for: Data analysts, data scientists, and research professionals.
Pro tip: Include examples of successful analyses that use specific statistical tools and techniques.
26. Technical Writing
Technical writing skills can help you create clear and concise technical documentation, including user manuals, training material, and technical reports.
Best for: Technical writers, instructional designers, and subject matter experts.
Pro tip: Share examples of technical documents you've created, including audience, purpose, and outcome.
27. Brand Management
Brand management skills can demonstrate your ability to develop and manage an identity that differentiates your company from others.
Brand identity is how companies set themselves apart from competitors, so they must continue to deliver on-brand messages to their customer base.
Best for: Brand managers, marketing professionals, and entrepreneurs.
Pro tip: Demonstrate successful branding campaigns you've managed, including the brand's identity, the target audience, and the impact they had on revenues and market share.
28. Data Visualization
Data visualization skills can demonstrate your ability to create compelling visual representations of complex data, making it easier to understand.
This skill is vital. You can create visualizations so data can be easily communicated to those less statistically savvy.
Best for: Data analysts, data scientists, and business professionals.
Pro tip: Highlight specific data visualization tools and techniques, and provide examples of successful visualizations you've created.
29. Cloud Computing
Cloud computing expertise shows you can design, deploy, and manage scalable and cost-effective cloud-based solutions to business challenges.
Best for: Cloud architects, IT professionals, and software developers.
Pro tip: Include examples of successful cloud computing projects you have managed and the platforms and services you have used.
30. Content Management Systems (CMS)
CMS capabilities demonstrate your ability to create, manage, and publish digital content across multiple platforms, such as websites, social media, and email.
Best for: Content managers, digital marketers, and web developers.
Pro tip: Provide examples of successful content management projects, and specify which CMS platforms and tools you've worked with.
31. Agile Methodology
Proficiency in Agile methodology can demonstrate your ability to manage projects using an iterative and collaborative approach, delivering value to the customer faster and more efficiently.
Best for: Project managers, software developers, and IT professionals.
Pro tip: Describe the Agile methodologies and frameworks you’ve used, along with successful examples of work you’ve done.
32. Software Testing
A solid background in software testing can demonstrate your ability to ensure software quality and reliability using various testing methods and tools.
Best for: Quality assurance professionals, software developers, and IT professionals.
Pro tip: Highlight specific testing methods and tools, and provide examples of successful testing projects you've managed.
33. Web Analytics
Web analytics skills demonstrate your ability to analyze website traffic and user behavior. Using this data, you can improve the user experience and help increase company visibility and revenue.
Best for: Digital marketers, web developers, and data analysts.
Pro tip: Include specific web analytics tools and techniques you've used and examples of successful analyses.
34. Supply Chain Management
Proficiency in supply chain management can demonstrate your ability to manage the flow of goods and services from the supplier to the customer, optimizing the supply chain performance and reducing costs.
Since this is a complex process, specify particular skills you have that serve the whole.
Best for: Supply chain managers, logistics professionals, and business analysts.
Pro tip: Provide examples of successful supply chain projects you have managed, including supply chain design, optimization, and performance measures.
35. Business Development
Business development skills demonstrate your ability to identify and pursue new business opportunities using various business development tools and techniques.
Also, name specific skills you have that fit this category since it can be a catch-all for many things. Draw out the particulars to strengthen your resume.
Best for: Business development managers, sales professionals, and entrepreneurs.
Pro tip: Provide examples of successful business development projects you've managed, including market analysis, business model development, and sales strategy implementation.
36. Database Design
Database design skills demonstrate your ability to design and implement database systems that meet business requirements and protect data.
Best for: Database administrators, IT professionals, and software developers.
Pro tip: Highlight specific database platforms and technologies you've worked with, and provide examples of successful database design projects you've managed.
37. Data Warehousing
Experience designing and implementing data warehouse solutions that can handle large volumes of data and support advanced analytics can demonstrate your skills.
Best for: Data architects, data engineers, and IT professionals.
Pro tip: Highlight your experience with specific data warehousing tools and describe how you've designed and optimized data warehouses to meet business needs.
38. Network Security
With the increasing importance of cybersecurity, the ability to implement and maintain network security measures is becoming more critical.
Best for: Cybersecurity professionals, network administrators, and IT professionals.
Pro tip: Provide examples of specific network security measures you've implemented to demonstrate your proficiency. Also, highlight your knowledge of network architecture and protocols and your ability to troubleshoot network issues.
39. Information Architecture
Information architecture skills involve organizing, structuring, and labeling content in a way that is intuitive and user-friendly for website visitors.
Best for: Web developers, UX designers, and digital marketers.
Pro tip: Highlight your experience developing information architecture plans and creating wireframes to demonstrate your proficiency in this area.
Provide examples of how your information architecture has improved the user experience for website visitors.
40. Market Research
Market research skills can help businesses identify customer needs and preferences. You can then make informed decisions about product development, pricing, and marketing strategies.
Best for: Market researchers, business analysts, and marketing professionals.
Pro tip: Highlight your experience with different market research methodologies, such as surveys, focus groups, and consumer interviews.
41. Business Strategy
Developing and executing effective business strategies is crucial for long-term growth and success. All successful businesses rely on strategy, so having the ability to create that vision for a company is extremely valuable.
Best for: Business development managers, consultants, and executives.
Pro tip: Provide past successes in developing and implementing business strategies. Highlight your ability to anticipate industry trends and competitive landscapes.
42. User Research
User research skills can help businesses understand the needs and preferences of their target audience — and develop products and services that meet those needs.
Best for: User experience (UX) researchers, product managers, and marketing professionals.
Pro tip: Highlight your experience with different user research methods, such as usability testing, interviews, and surveys, and provide examples of how you’ve used those insights to inform product development.
43. Front-end Development
Front-end development skills can help businesses create visually appealing and user-friendly websites and applications.
Since so many customers expect to connect with brands online, having easy-to-use digital assets is imperative for companies to succeed.
Best for: Front-end developers, web designers, and UX professionals.
44. Back-end Development
Back-end development skills are essential for building and maintaining complex software systems and databases.
Best for: Back-end developers, software engineers, and IT professionals.
Pro tip: Highlight your experience with back-end development technologies such as Python, Ruby on Rails, or Node.js, and provide examples of software systems you've built or maintained.
45. Cloud Architecture
Cloud architecture skills can help businesses optimize their cloud computing technologies and reduce costs associated with on-premise infrastructure.
Best for: Cloud architects, IT professionals, and software engineers.
Pro tip: Highlight your experience with cloud computing technologies such as Amazon Web Services (AWS) or Microsoft Azure, and provide examples of how you've optimized cloud infrastructure to meet business needs.
46. Process Improvement
Process improvement skills can help companies streamline operations, reduce costs, and increase efficiency and productivity.
Best for: Operations managers, business analysts, and process improvement specialists.
Pro tip: Highlight your experience in analyzing and improving business processes using methodologies such as Lean Six Sigma. Then, provide examples of the results you achieved.
47. Administrative Support
Administrative support skills can help companies run smoothly and efficiently by assisting with scheduling, data entry, and document management.
Best for: Administrative assistants, office managers, and executive assistants.
Pro tip: Highlight your experience with different administrative tasks and software tools, such as Microsoft Office, Google Suite, and project management software.
48. Data Entry
Proficiency in data entry can demonstrate your ability to accurately and efficiently enter data into databases and systems.
Best for: Data entry clerks, administrative assistants, and researchers.
Pro tip: Highlight your typing speed, accuracy, and experience with different data entry software tools and databases.
Strong photography skills can help companies create high-quality visual content for marketing, advertising, and branding purposes.
Best for: Photographers, marketing professionals, and graphic designers.
Pro tip: Highlight your experience with different types of photography, such as portrait, landscape, and product photography, and your proficiency with photo editing software tools.
50. Audio Production
Audio production skills allow you to record, edit, and produce high-quality audio content, such as podcasts, music, commercials, and films.
Best for: Audio engineers, producers, musicians, and podcasters.
Pro tip: Showcase your experience with industry-standard audio software and equipment, and provide examples of audio projects you've worked on, including any notable achievements or recognition received for your work.
Ready to Revamp Your Resume?
To boost your chances of landing your dream job, make sure you shine a spotlight on your relevant skills and qualifications. The hard skills examples from this post should help.
Also, keep your resume short and sweet, and concentrate on the skills that matter most for the job you're after.