Transferrable Skills


The Soft Skill Approach


You may think that transferrable and soft skills are two different things but more often than not they are the same. A transferrable skill is something a student does outside a work setting that can be used in the workplace. For example: if the student is an avid “gamer”, they have tremendous skills to take to the workplace. Some of these skills are hand-eye coordination, dexterity, and being technologically savvy. These particular skills are very valuable and are required for many different jobs. The Educators can play an important role in helping to identify the transferrable skills based on what they observe in the classroom.

The same goes for soft skills.  Let’s say a student has a particularly engaging and friendly personality; this is a transferrable skill. There are many different positions available in need of friendly staff.  Once you have pinned down the students’ other attributes, a job could be close at hand in customer service, administration, or any number of positions.

In order to discover a student’s transferrable skills, an Employment Professional needs to develop a “Discovery Process” which includes evaluating traits like core values and work preferences as well as task analysis. Take the time to see what the student enjoys doing in their downtime– do they enjoy bowling?  Swimming?  Skating? Playing bingo?  Fishing?  Any of these activities indicate transferrable skills; it simply takes time and dedication on the part of the Employment Professional to discover which of these skills could be applied to a potential employment opportunity. The Employment Professional and Educator can work together during the Discovery Process.

Keep in mind, just because you may think a student is best suited for a certain employment opportunity, ultimately their interests might not align with the job you have in mind. For example, a student may be social, outgoing, enjoys food and beverages—all of which are necessary to work in the foodservice industry—but has no interest in a job working with the public. 

Once you have found the student’s transferrable skills, you then have to find out how to make them work in one of the areas they would are interested in. This website has many tools to help discover the potentials and interests of a Job Seeker ( 

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