Resume Skills List and Examples (120+ Skills for the Resume) [2020 Updated]

skills list for the resume

Trying to think of what skills to put on your resume? It can be hard! Exclusively, here, we’ve put together the largest database of soft skills that you can copy and paste to put on your resume under your skills section.

Soft skills are the qualities that you bring to the job. It can be helpful for a hiring manager to see and understand your competencies. While these are measurable to an employer. They are often thought of as the way to bring chemistry into the workplace. Meaning, your employer wants to know that your soft skills complement the team that you are going to be working with. Or potentially add a soft quality or dynamic into the team that the manager feels is missing.

This is generally how employers and a hiring manager may use soft skills to their advantage when reading your resume, cover letter, or listening to your interview answers.

Resume Skills List

In this article we're going to cover the following questions and topics related to putting skills on your resume:

Ready? Let's jump right in.

Skills You Can Use on Your Resume

If you’re looking at other skills lists, it’s important to recognize that they aren’t simply listing soft skills, but are mixing in soft skills and hard skills. These are specifically soft skills for your resume. Soft skills are equivalent to understanding what competencies that you bring to the workforce.

Competencies are very important in the workplace because they show your manager and leadership team how you might be able to successfully collaborate and fit in with the other team members. Leadership teams often strive to have soft skills intermingle with one another. Creating the most efficient and highly-productive team members.

Technical Sklils

These technical skills or computer skills can be listed on your resume section as hard skills or technical abilities.

Soft Skills for Nurses, Teachers, Lawyers

If you’re going into the nursing, teaching, or law field. Then your soft skills may need to change. They may be more oriented around your certifications and the ability for you to practice educating, nursing, or law within that state.

Here would be some examples for a teacher:

Soft Skills for Cashiers

Below are resume skills cashiers should list or include on their resume. Since a cashier role is an entry-level position, each job skill or general skill should be included in the bullet points for each previous work experience or in a skills section.

What Is the Most Important Soft Skill for the Resume?

We ran a survey in 2019 that helped us to determine the absolute best soft skill to have. And it is “Adaptability”. This shows your employer that you are willing to change. Willing to evolve. And willing to move with where the direction of the business is going.

For employers and HR professionals, they see this as the most important soft skill to have. It shows your ability to think about the business needs first. Then think about your own needs second. Which is vital in being able to perform highly for any type of business.

Related: 2 Best Soft Skills To Beat AI (Plus Soft Skills List)

What Are Professional Soft Skills?

Soft skills and professional soft skills are the same. But what makes them more “professional” than not is when you are targeting your soft skills to the job requirements. If you don’t know what those are, you can usually read through the lines and determine which soft skills might be applicable for the job based on the job description.

Where Do Soft Skills Go on the Resume?

When placing soft skills on a chronological resume, they should be the last section near your contact information, awards or accolades portion of your resume.

Resume Skills Example for a Chronological or Combination Resume

chronological or hybrid resume skills example

Usually, you’ll see soft skills placed on the left-hand sidebar or left rail of the resume. If you were to think of percentages of the one-page resume, your your education would take up 25% of the resume. And soft skills, hard skills, accolades, merits, publications, or any other details would take up the remaining part of the resume.

If your work experience and education is taking up too much of your resume and you can’t list your soft skills, it is recommended that you bring them up in your cover letter instead.

Here are the best places to put your skills:

If you're writing a functional resume then your skills will be throughout the entire resume, listed in order of priority of what the job description calls for. Since your skills will be the majority of your resume writing, you'll want to research the top skills required for the job function. You can do this by performing an informational interview with a professional who is already employed in the job title you want or by speaking with career professionals who have a long history of success in your industry.

Resume Skills Example for a Functional Resume

functional resume skills example

Learn more about resume formats.

Are Soft Skills Necessary to Have on the Resume?

Knowing your soft skills is important. It will be aspects of your interview that you’ll want to lean into. For example, when you are telling a STAR interview question, you’ll want to tell a business story that leans into what your soft skill is.

This story could be about how you showed team leadership in a time when there was pressure to meet a deadline. The fact that you knew, in advance, what your soft skills are is the important part of this process.

To answer the question, are soft skills to have on your resume? The answer is no. They are not required.

But it is essential that you take the time to decide and understand what your soft skills are. You will be expressing them in your cover letter, interview, and when you start your work with the company.

Resume Skill FAQ

Questions about skills that a job seeker may have when deciding which skills to put on their resume.

Should I put my skills in my resume experience section or my resume skills section?

You should use your skills to explain how you accomplished certain outcomes in your experience section. But if you'd like to list skills specifically, like a top skill you have, computer skills, or transferable skills, then you should put it in a section of its own.

Should I mention personal skills?

No, only list professional skills. These should be a relevant skill to the job. These are skills that show your professional experience, and nothing more.

What is a key skill?

A key skill is something that the hiring manager is going to notice as being extremely relevant to the job title you want. Be sure to investigate the job description or job ad and determine what you believe that might be.

How can I determine what the right skills are for the job based on my potential employer and their expectations of the position?

Investigating the job description can certainly help. You can investigate the company's website as well, look for their objectives, goals, and more. This might give you some ideas for what are considered "good skills" to list on your resume.

Should I include skills my professional summary?

You should only reference your skills if you have to. Ideally, your resume summary should contain accomplishments.

Should I say additional skills upon request?

No, just try to keep your resume clear and concise. Don't make your skills section too large or too small. Your experience as a professional will not be measured by your soft skills.

What are transferable skills?

These are universal skills and benefits that all employers can benefit from. Meaning, they aren't specific to your job function.

Why is it important to consider how an applicant tracking system will interpret my skills section?

Because of overuse of a particular skill might seem like "keyword stuffing" which the ATS will flag and deprioritize. Don't overuse these keywords.

Is there a resume example showing the use of resume skills?

Yes, all of our the resumes in our resume sample database have a resume template you can use for this.

Why are skills important?

They are most important as a way of showing your job experience. They don't dictate your performance, which a hiring manager will care a lot about. You should have a skill set that alludes to your ability to produce great outcomes. This is what shows a recruiter that you have the experience that is bountiful in your field to be a valuable addition to the team.

Should I allude to my skils for my prospective employer during my job interview?

Speaking to your accomplishments is a better way of speaking to your experience than skills. Be sure to focus on what you can bring to the company.

I'm not sure what resume format I should be using, where do I put my skills?

If you are absolutely unsure where to put your skills, you may want to contact a professional resume writer who can help to determine which skills you should be speaking to based on your experience as well as which resume format is going to work best for you. Remember to tell the professional resume writer that you want to support your skills through your experience section, too.

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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