Soft and Hard Skills: They’re More Important Than Work History

Soft and Hard Skills: They're More Important Than Work History

Pepelwerk is the matchmaker of the working world, and we make those matches through connecting our users’ skills to the skills that employers need. I realized, even actually before we launched the product, that it was going to be a challenge to get people to realize that they have a list of skills and attributes that are valuable in the marketplace. Another challenge: getting employers to understand that full sentence job descriptions and asking for a unicorn, someone with just the right amount of experience and the perfect skillset, just doesn’t work. We know it doesn’t work because we’ve spent the past 35 years or more trying to do this whole resume, creative word, cheat the screening algorithms kind of thing. I’m really excited to lead the charge for this next generation of job seekers so that they understand the value of their skills and abilities in the marketplace.

Soft Skills vs. Hard Skills

So let’s first discuss the difference between a soft skill and a hard skill. Soft skills are your social skills. They make you something like a good collaborator, a teammate, whether or not you’re really likable, and skills such as whether or not you can actually communicate or whether you’re an effective listener.

We don’t ask for soft skills when you fill out your pepelwerk Talent Profile because most employers want those types of skills as a default. You have to learn how to function in a working world by being a good communicator, an active listener, and somebody who understands the difference between collaboration and working as a solo provider or a contractor. This especially applies if you are working in a digital environment, meaning everything that you do, produce, or how your skills come to life are through the use of a computer or the internet.

Your hard skills are things in life that you have had to go out and seek, skills that are technical or creative in nature. A hard skill could be programming, mechanical engineering, the ability to build a building, or whether or not you can use Adobe Creative to deliver a sample of your work to employers. Even for our healthcare practitioners, you have to learn how to draw blood. You have to learn how to understand the way that the body works. A hard skill is something that you’ve actually had to take the time to learn.

Skills vs. Resumes

Now why are soft and hard skills so important to Pepelwerk? Why are we trying to trash resumes for the next generation? Resumes are a documentary of your work history. For people who are in high school, college, or are just trying to figure out their career through discovery, they’re not going to have work experience. 

 Why should employers get better at defining the skills they need? They’re missing out on exceptional talent (that’s YOU) that can deliver the results that their business needs by relying too much on resumes and not asking for what they really need. A job description will tell you what results they’re looking for, but then you have to reverse it to figure out: “what are the skills that I need to get that done?” 

The new generation of job seekers deserves better. Pepelwerk is trashing the resume, work history, background check process to match people with work directly based on their skills and attributes. 

Acquiring and Applying Skills for Your Career

There’s a number of ways that you can learn skills you need to own your work life and get the career you want. You can do it through the continued education in bricks and mortar classes, online courses, YouTube tutorials, internship, or shadowing. There are so many options for you to actually learn the skills that you seek, even if they’re basic life skills. There are so many resources that you can tap into to say, “Hm, I don’t know how to do that, but I want to learn how to do that.” 

Whether or not that skill is marketable in the workplace, you will know through pepelwerk’s skills matching technology. We want to give actionable information around skills that are in demand to match you with work that you want. Remember, we give you the tools. It’s up to you how you use them.