30+ Organizational Skills for Your Resume

organizational skills

Organizational skills are part of the baseline expertise that employers expect you to have. But what are they? And how do you explain that you have organizational skills? And where do you put that when you’re building your resume or cover letter?

These can be complicated questions that can cause you stress when you’re building out your resume. But not to fear, we’re going to go over everything you need to know about organizational skills and how to include them on your resume, cover letter, and speak to them during your interview.

What Are Organizational Skills (Definition)?

Organizational skills are the ability to handle multiple tasks, projects, initiatives, and objectives in a streamlined way. They are considered process versus output.

Process is a big part of organizational skills. It is the way that you get work accomplished. Not just how to you get from Point A to Point B.

When thinking about organizational skills, it is everything that makes up the things that you do while you’re getting work done. As long as it fits in with that, you are probably talking about organizational skills.

It is often misunderstood as simply coordination. When we speak about organizational skills, most people think of a stack of papers. And having those papers properly organized. While that is a great visual for organization, it does not mean that is how you should think about organizational skills.

Why Do Employers Value Them?

It is vital to understand that organizational skills won’t make you stand out as a candidate. Organizational skills are expected by your employer.

This means that by listing organizational skills as part of your job application assets (cover letter or resume), you are lining up to the rest of the candidates.

Don’t mistake that for not needing to list organizational skills on your resume or cover letter. It should still be discussed, mentioned, and listed. But be sure to recognize that listing organizational skills alone won’t make you stand out as a high-profile candidate.

Employers value these skills because it shows your ability to have performed the job duties in the past. Organizational skills or process as we’ll call it in this example only presents itself when you have repeated a task multiple times.

Think about it, if you’ve ever built a chair from IKEA, the first chair you built took you longer than the second one. That’s because you had the prior experience to be able to learn from. That’s what the employer is looking for. Is that you have enough experience to know how to be efficient in your job duties.

What Makes Skills Organizational

There are a few types of categories that we can classify particular skills into when thinking about them being organizational. That is coordination, teamwork, and strategy.

When we talk about communication in these situations, we’re not simply thinking about verbal communication. It may be customer support or client relations, for example. Which can show your ability to speak to parties outside of the company about the brand or business. And this would be classified as an organizational skill.

Let’s jump into the skills so you can get an idea of which ones you might want to mention.

Coordination:

Teamwork:

Strategy:

Each of these skills speaks to being organized as a byproduct of their execution. And that’s the key. Instead of simply listing “organizational skills” on your resume, by telling prior work scenarios or stories that include some of these skills, you are telling your future employer that you have organization talents.

If you’re trying to think of which types of organizational skills are most applicable to the job you’re applying for, looking up the job description or online job posting can be a clue. Usually, employers will include mentions within the job requirements or duties that include which skills they may be searching for.

If you didn’t find the job through an online job listing, you may want to look it up before you proceed with targeting your resume or cover letter.

Organizational Skills and What They Mean

Organizational skills is a broad category. It is a parent category of which other skills can be bucketed into. Due to that, when you want to display your organizational abilities, you’ll want to mention these skills.

Administrative Skills

Administrative Skills as an organizational skill would mean showing your ability to schedule meetings, write notes, build checklists, and ensure all tasks are lined up to get work accomplished.

Assessment Skills

Assessment skills as an organizational skill would mean your ability to assess work. For example, you may want to assess work in progress and determine if it is complete, good enough, or needs more work.

Attention to Detail Skills

Attention to detail is important when thinking about organization. It shows your ability to be whole or complete in your work. And not miss the small checklist items that might make your work completed.

Coordination Skills

Coordination skills are important when thinking about organization because they help you plan your organization. It could be around scheduling your meetings in order to provide the right insight to make decisions.

Documentation Skills

Documentation skills align to organizational skills because, without a clear history of work or discussions surrounding work, there’s no clear path forward. Being a great documenter can assist in organization and ensuring work is on track.

Effectiveness Skills

Being effective is more than thinking “you’re right” regarding your work. It’s about asking your colleagues, managers, and other leaders on the effectiveness of your work.

Identifying Problems

Identifying problems is a great skill. It could be a problem with your workflow. A problem with the way you’re working with others. Or a problem with a product or service. Identifying them and documenting them is considered organizational in nature.

Identifying Resources

Similar to identifying problems, identifying solutions can be a great way to show leadership and show your ability to organize your thoughts or solutions for a business.

Policy Enforcement Skills

For many positions, such as a police officer, security officer or teacher, these skills are vital to being an organized employee. You’ll need to keep constraints on situations and that is a form of organization.

Prioritization Skills

The most important skill. Being able to prioritize is one of the best ways to show your organizational abilities. Let’s say you have a list of work you expect to complete, where you do you start? Knowing how to do that shows your ability to stay organized and be outcome-oriented with your work.

Productivity Skills

Keeping others or yourself on track is a form of organization. It shows your ability to direct. And providing direction (or self-direction) is a form of staying organized.

Situational Assessment Skills

Situationally assessing or analyzing the status of your work can be extremely beneficial to determine your next steps. In this vein, it can be organizational in nature.

Task Analysis Skills

Analyzing your own tasks and determine their worthiness is a form of organization. It can coincide with prioritization and assessing the best place to spend your time.

Task Assessment Skills

Assessing your own tasks and determine their worthiness is a form of organization and is similar to “Task Analysis” skills. It can coincide with prioritization and assessing the best place to spend your time.

Workflow Analysis Skills

Being able to comprehend the efficiency of your workflow and your own process can be organizational in nature. It can show your ability to improve your own process, coinciding with time-management skills.

Workflow Management Skills

Similar to “Workflow Analysis” skills, management of your workflow is the ability to calibrate the tools you use. This can simplify your process or advance it, depending on the needs of the business.

How to List Them on Your Job Application Assets

There are four different ways to include these skills on your job application assets. The most effective way is to include short stories that tell business scenarios you were part of and the value that you added to the business scenario that includes one of the skills from the list above.

Think of this as telling a story which speaks to a challenge that you may have had and how you overcame that challenge.

With that strategy in mind, we have four particular areas to bring up these skills: in your cover letter, on your resume summary, in your “skills” section of the resume, and in your prior work experience bullet points.

With each of these, if you can tell short stories, that are less than four sentences, you’ll have more success than if you simply listed the skill. Why is that? Because employers won’t believe you when you list your skills.

But if you mention prior business scenarios they can call your references and confirm that they were true. Which hold a lot more weight in their consideration for employment than if you don’t do that.

Jobs That Can Benefit from Organizational Skills

While all job titles can benefit from organizational skills, there are a few job titles where organizational skills will have more weight than others.

Those would be considered administrative, operational, or assistant job titles. This where your ability to be able to multi-task while staying streamlined (in terms of efficiency) are going to be valued at a higher degree.

If you feel like you’re applying for a position that is administrative, operational, or is as an assistant to an executive; be sure to lean further into the organizational skills that we mentioned then you might think.

Some of those job titles would be:

If you aren’t sure whether or not the job title you’re applying for requires organizational skills, try to include at least one to three as a baseline. Then integrate other soft skills which might be attractive to the employer or were mentioned as part of the job description.

FAQ’s

What are good organizational skills for teachers?

Teachers who want to show great organizational skills should mention curriculum development, lesson planning, prioritization, policy enforcement, assessment skills, and administrative skills.

Why are organizational skills important to employers?

Organizational skills show employers that you know how to accomplish work. Without organization, an employee might spend more time trying to accomplish an objective than an employee who has exceptional organizational skills. That addition time can be costly for the business, the manager, and the employer.

Other Skills Resources

author: patrick algrim
About the author

Patrick Algrim is an experienced executive who has spent a number of years in Silicon Valley hiring and coaching some of the world’s most valuable technology teams. Patrick has been a source for Human Resources and career related insights for Forbes, Glassdoor, Entrepreneur, Recruiter.com, SparkHire, and many more.

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