When the time comes to find a new job, it’s going to take more than a strong resume and well-written cover letter to land you the position. More than ever, employers are looking past the hard skills listed on the resume and have turned their attention to the applicant him- or herself and what they, as individuals, can bring to the company. While work experience and social responsibility are certainly important, they’re no longer enough to secure you a position. Without further ado, here are a few of the traits that employers are seeking in potential employees.

  • They’re looking for a willingness to learn.
    • Walking into any job, regardless of industry, is going to require you to learn the job and familiarize yourself with the way things are done. One of the worst kinds of people you can hire are the ones who walk into a brand new job on the first day and act like they already understand everything and know it all. On any new job, you need to be willing to learn new things and listen to new ideas coming from people who likely know more about the matter than you; stepping onto the scene and immediately assuming you know everything will likely slow efficiency in the company and could lead to dissonance between employees.
  • They’re looking for self-reliance.
    • The first week or even month on the job, asking questions is normal and even expected. Most jobs have a learning curve, and it can take a while to adjust and settle into your new role. However, at some point in your career you need to take the reigns on your position. Employers don’t want to hire someone that they’re going to have to constantly coddle and reassure to get the results they need; while recognition is important, it shouldn’t be a qualifier that, without it, you can’t do your job properly.
  • They’re looking for dependable employees.
    • If you’re the type of person who consistently shows up late, misses meetings, calls off repeatedly, or slacks on the job, then you either need to drastically change your ways or find a business willing to hire that kind of employee.  Plain and simple, it’s bad business to hire employees who aren’t going to take themselves, or the job, seriously. Demonstrate your dependability by showing up on time for every interview and being prepared to discuss past experiences when others counted on you to come through.
  • They’re looking for problem solvers.
    • When you encounter a roadblock or a snafu during the work day, do you try to solve the problem yourself first, or do you usually run straight to your supervisor? Employers seek people who actively look for the solution to the problems they encounter without needing to double check or depend on someone else for the answer to every question. While asking questions is never a bad thing, you need to learn to be secure enough to not need to second guess every decision you make or you’ll be costing the business time and money in the long run. Come prepared with stories from you life you can recall to showcase this particular trait.