While many people focus on hard skills when developing their IT career, your soft skills can be just as critical to your success. Many college and university graduates leave the classroom armed with the technical ability and know-how to work on today’s most advanced systems in fast-paced and challenging environments. However, this form of experience does not necessarily indicate that a potential employee has the soft skills necessary to function well within a workplace.
Combine this with the fact that while hard skills are often easy to teach and transfer to new employees, soft skills cannot be so easily developed through standard forms of instruction, which makes those who already possess these traits even more valuable. In order to ensure your IT career will flourish, make sure you work to develop your soft skills, especially in these three key areas.
The IT field can be highly technical, making it seem very complex to co-workers who are not as familiar with the terminology and the intricacies of the profession. In order to work more effectively with others, your communication skills will need to be developed in such a way as to allow you to work with those who may not have the same knowledge base or experience.
Sophisticated communication skills will allow you to explain the necessary information to those who are less familiar with the subject without sounding condescending. This is critical when you are responsible for training users in the proper operation of new technology-based solutions, working with members of management to create project plans and outline business goals, as well as for guiding user requirements during product development.
Teamwork and Collaboration
While communicating effectively with other employees is important, so is the ability to work effectively as part of a team. Within the IT sector, a project’s success is rarely based on the work of a single individual, especially as more technologies begin to integrate with each other in new ways.
Being able to work as part of a team allows individuals to pool their strengths and offset their weaknesses. It can also serve as a wonderful learning opportunity for those interested in advancing their current skill set or cross-training into similar areas. For example, the movement towards unified communication technology has begun to integrate voice services with other IT messaging solutions in ways that would previously have been unimaginable, and those efforts are now integrating with mobile technology and cloud-based IT solutions. Being part of a collaborative team effort allows you to gain exposure into new areas, as well as network with other professionals with compatible skill sets.
Adaptability and Creativity
With the pace at which IT seems to change, an IT professional needs to be prepared to adapt to the shifting environment in creative ways. This can include dealing unexpected changes to project requirements, most often referred to as scope creep, as well as adjustments to overall business priorities that can cause one project to be shelved in favor of pursuing another.
Additionally, you may be required to conjure unique solutions to improve the overall effectiveness of a final product, including integrating features across multiple systems while promoting mobility within the workplace. This can lead you to use your knowledge in new ways, and being open to trying solutions that may not have been attempted before, in order to produce the desired outcome.
Looking for a Career in IT?
If you are looking for ways to help make your soft skills shine, the professionals at Resolution Technologies are here to help. With a focus in technical staffing, we understand what current employers are looking for beyond the basic hard skills in the job descriptions. Contact Resolution Technologies Today!