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Tech industry values EQ as much as hard skills when recruiting

“If you’re an effective, passionate professional who is a great team player and has good communications skills, please apply now!”

Does the sentence above sound familiar? It’s basically every job advertisement everywhere, ever.

But how important are these traits really? How much does it matter whether or not you’re a ‘devoted team player’ with ‘good communication skills’?

That’s exactly what specialist recruiter Randstad Technologies (opens in new tab) researched, and it turns out being a hard-core professional at whatever you do doesn’t guarantee you a job in the UK’s tech industry.

It is, however, a necessity, but soft skills are also of extreme importance to tech employers.

In an analysis of job advertisements posted on their site, Randstad found that tech employers frequently look for soft skills when hiring new staff.

Soft skills or emotional intelligence (EQ) such as being self-aware and having the social skills to interact well and empathise with others is sought after just as much as technical expertise, with employers in the tech sector frequently mentioning these in their list of required attributes.

The analysis says team players are the most highly valued employees, with 66 per cent of employers looking for people who work well in groups.

Close second are people with good communications skills, as 43 per cent of employers mention it in their job advertisements.

Excellent organisational skills (28 per cent) and time management (22 per cent) were also on the list.

Almost a third of employers (31 per cent) including the term ‘effective’ in their list of desired skills, where 18 per cent stated they were looking to hire someone with demonstrable ‘passion’.

Having the right attitude is just as important as hard skills with employers also mentioning personality traits such as flexibility, accuracy, the ability to show initiative and enthusiasm in their list of desired attributes, the research shows.

Sead Fadilpašić is a freelance tech writer and journalist with more than 17 years experience writing technology-focussed news, blogs, whitepapers, reviews, and ebooks. And his work has featured in online media outlets from all over the world, including Al Jazeera Balkans (where he was a Multimedia Journalist), Crypto News, TechRadar Pro, and IT Pro Portal, where he has written news and features for over five years. Sead's experience also includes writing for inbound marketing, where he creates technology-based content for clients from London to Singapore. Sead is a HubSpot-certified content creator.