Research Skills Definition, List, and Examples

research skills explained

Having research skills part of your resume, cover letter, and interview session can go a long way. Employers are starting to value an employee who knows how to qualitatively research information and subject matter before making business decisions.

As more consumers begin to use the internet, more technology is invented, and more rapidly changing market conditions occur; research skills become far more important.

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Why Research Skills Are Important

Much like adaptability skills, knowing how to quantitatively research information and use that at your disposal is immensely valuable to a business.

Those who make decisions based on instinct have a risk of making business decisions that could be costly. Both in the time it may take to reverse poor decisions. Or in the outcome of those poor decisions.

Employee’s who are able to take themselves out of the equation and use research can produce incredible results.

Research Skills to Your Employer

The value of research skills to an employer goes even higher than recognizing your ability to research business questions and be able to determine the correct paths forward. It shows your employer that you recognize how to take action on your own.

For example, to an employer, knowing that you have the ability to self-motivate is important. Research skills, in a way, express that. Because they are telling your future employer that if you experience roadblocks, you will use all the tools at your disposal to remove them.

This can be a really healthy indicator to your employer that you are passionate about your work, once you get involved. And that you'll stop at nothing to be able to answer tough business questions and have that lead to progress.

What Are Research Skills?

When listing research skills on the resume, you should be able to specify “Research Skills” as part of your soft skills portion. Your soft skills portion of the resume should be removed from your previous work history or professional summary.

If you want to break your research skills into smaller increments, you should be able to utilize the following skills as part of your list:

While these are secondary to your listing of “Research Skills” on the resume, they can be a beneficial addition to the list.

Related: Resume Skills List (120+ Skills for the Resume)

Showing Examples Of Research Skills

You may want to show off your ability to perform research during your interview as well. Having your research skills as part of your resume and cover letter can absolutely help increase your chances of getting employed. But at times, you may want to show your future employer that you have situational examples of where you were able to use research.

Here is an example of a story that you might want to tell regarding your ability to utilize research:

“Recently, a colleague and I were looking into blockchain. We were analyzing blockchain for the finance industry. We knew that many key players in the space have been moving towards this, including J.P. Morgan. We wanted to comprehend the subject matter a bit more before we advised our clients on what to expect in terms of guidance for the coming years. We spent a week, sprinting through white papers and polling experts with our own set of question criteria. At the end of it, we had a much better understanding of blockchain than we could ever imagine. And the reason why research is so valuable to perform is that most of what we found out was new information. Which caused us to change our opinion of the business matter.”

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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,, SparkHire, and many more.


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