What are the essential skills for job candidates in 2013?

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recruitment%202(1).jpg" style="width: 299px; height: 169px; margin: 5px; float: left;" />It’s the start of a new year and many companies are on the look-out for fresh talent to bring onboard. So, HRM New Zealand asked three prominent HR specialists what they believed would be the must-have skills for job candidates in 2013. As it turned out, there was quite a lot of agreement.

Both Kristina Vergis, recruitment co-ordinator – The Warehouse, and Tim Watts, director – GradConnection NZ, prioritised communication skills. “If you don’t have excellent verbal / written communication and the ability to articulate your value-add to the organisation you will be restricting your chances of progressing,” said Watts.

Vergis and Watts also emphasised the importance of teamwork. Watts pointed out that businesses depend on collaboration in straightened circumstances and that an employee must be able to work collaboratively with other team members, or risk being identified as a non-contributor’.

Watts and Amie Maxwell, talent sourcing team leader – Air New Zealand, concurred on two key skills: commercial acumen and social media / digital skills. “The need to continually connect with the global economy and emerging markets, products and services means that commerciality is key to organisational performance,” Maxwell said. “[Therefore,] a forward-thinking, commercially-aware employee will be an asset in any role in 2013,” according to Watts.

In terms of the second skill, both Watts and Maxwell emphasised the need for candidates to be fluent users of social media, and to be able to keep up with emerging trends.

Vergis and Maxwell concurred on the need to demonstrate problem-solving skills. “Not being happy with the status quo and always challenging and striving towards faster, better, more streamlined, more efficient,” as Maxwell put it.

Vergis also listed the ‘willingness to learn’ and ‘thinking on feet,’ while Maxwell thought that a degree of ‘self-awareness’ was imperative. “This is especially true for future leaders so that they are aware of how their strengths and weaknesses impact their staff,” she explained. Watts included ‘initiative/intuition’. “Managers and business owners don’t always have time to be on top of everything and expect their staff to seize opportunities if they present themselves,” he said.



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