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What Are Employability Skills?



What Are Employability Skills?

Most jobs require specific skills to succeed, like knowing how to use social media scheduling tools if you’re going to work as a content creator.

However, most jobs require skills that aren’t always listed on a job application because you’re expected to have them no matter what, like communicating with your coworkers.

These skills, often called employability skills, are critical even if they’re not listed on a job application. Let’s go over what they are, how they apply to day-to-day activities, and how to improve upon them so you can succeed in every position you have.


As foundational skills, employability skills can be transferable to any position you hold, regardless of job type. For example, you need to communicate well regardless of your position level, whether you’re the C-Suite executive or newly-hired marketing intern.

Employability skills aren’t always listed as required skills on job applications because they are expected as a baseline, but employers and interviewers will still look for them during interviews and expect you to use them on the job.

Developing Employability Skills

You can develop employability skills without specific training through experiences at school, work, hobbies, and extracurricular activities. For example, you can develop public speaking skills from presentations given in class and collaboration skills from playing on a sports team in your free time.

Employability Skills Examples

Let’s go over some examples of employability skills.

  • Communication: In all positions, you’ll need to communicate with your teammates and customers and be able to explain yourself clearly, both verbally and in writing.
  • Collaboration: Employers want you to collaborate because teamwork is often a means by which a company can meet its goals. Collaboration also means being able to work well with others.
  • Critical Thinking: This is your ability to analyze and understand the information in your workplace and act on it. This is a critical employability skill because you’ll always need to think logically about problems and situations that arise at work and come to a solution.
  • Self-management: Employers want you to self-manage and meet deadlines and goals without significant guidance unless necessary. While there’s nothing wrong with asking for help, employers want to train you and have you be able to take on your everyday tasks.
  • Adaptability: Adaptability is a critical employability skill because things can change quickly at work, and adjusting as necessary can be the difference between continuing business success or falling behind.
  • Reliability: Employers want to know that they can trust you in all aspects of work, that you’re punctual and complete assignments, show up on time and that you can be consistent in your overall performance without strict guidance.
  • Organization/Planning: Being organized and able to plan means you can adequately understand how to complete your assignments in a structured and timely manner. You can create schedules and stick to them to meet targets and deadlines.
  • Leadership: Employers appreciate leadership skills because they want you to take charge when necessary, whether over your job performance or during team activities, or because you’re at a leadership level and manage other people.
  • Willingness to learn: Being willing to learn is required for all jobs as you’re always expected to learn on the job, be open to learning on the job, and take on new tasks.
  • Tech Savvy: A baseline ability to use technology in day-to-day job duties, anything from knowing how to send an email, conduct a query online, or use tools like Google Suite. Technological skills move out of essential employability skills when they are things like using different coding languages.

Improve Employability Skills

As mentioned above, employability skills aren’t taught. They come along with different experiences like working on a job and participating in hobbies. Working on improving your skills can typically be done in activities you may already be involved in. For example:

  • If you want to improve your organization skills, you can organize events in your community.
  • If you want to become a stronger leader, you can ask to shadow current leaders at your workplace to learn from their style or step up to the plate to lead new workplace activities.
  • If you want to improve your technical skills, you can start leveraging different tools in your day-to-day life.
  • If you want to be better at self-management, you can ask for more responsibility at work to help you learn about time management and organization.

When working to improve your employability skills, it may be helpful to plan out your progress in a checklist.

Employability Skills Checklist

An employability skills checklist will help you create an improvement plan to follow. You can select a specific skill you want to work on and outline the steps you’ll take to improve, a desired timeframe for the process, and resources that will help you get to your end goal.


employability skills checklist

Download This Template Here

Over To You

Developing employability skills isn’t a significant challenge, as we often develop them over time through life experiences. Use our checklist to take stock of the ones you have, and create plans to further develop those you think are lacking.

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skill improvement template

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How marketers are preparing for the future of in-game ads



Gen Z metaverse users are more trusting and willing to spend

As the IAB rolls out new ad standards for gaming, marketers at brands and agencies are preparing for the future of in-game ads. That’s because more consumers than ever identify as gamers (up to three billion globally), and with new technology and gaming experiences, they’re more reachable by brands.

One sign of how the landscape is changing, adtech companies like Anzu are partnering with publishers to provide dynamic ad placements in-game. This allows brands who don’t have a comprehensive gaming strategy to test and learn, and also to incorporate gaming into a broader omnichannel media strategy.

But the sheer size of the gaming audience – over 200 million gamers in the US alone – means marketers who get more involved can produce greater returns by tapping into this engaged population.

Lead with brand strategy. Partnerships between game publishers and adtech companies are making it easier for brands to find their audiences in-game. Brands don’t have to speculate as much about if their customers are playing specific games. And if a brand’s customers are already playing the game, marketers should dive in, too.

“We don’t necessarily have a gaming strategy,” said Paul Mascali, head of games and esports for PepsiCo. “We have a brand strategy that gaming can help. We do this by leveraging data with third parties or internal data to reach those consumers who are consuming the content.”

Read next: PepsiCo’s strategies for marketing via online games and esports

Understanding the community. Also, brands should be consistent and show that they’re invested in the gaming community, Mascali said.


That’s because the gaming community – or, more specifically, the communities built around specific games – are multi-faceted.

For instance, gamers aren’t just plugged into the gameplay. They soak in the culture around the games on streaming platforms like Twitch. But just because videogame fans are passively watching another expert player on a streaming video doesn’t mean they’re not engaged and listening attentively.

“Twitch streamers are a great example of modern day gamers,” said Sarah Ioos, head of sales for the Americas at Twitch. “Non-gaming content has erupted — it doubled during the pandemic in year one. Gamers are not a monolith, they’re multifaceted. We see Twitch streamers bringing more of their whole self into their streaming.”

More lifestyle categories. As PepsiCo has demonstrated, there is a natural crossover between gaming and sports, which leads to traditional sports categories like beverages and snacks.

During the pandemic, when everybody, including gamers, were shut in, gaming content expanded. Gamers were sharing more about their lifestyles, including exercise routines, cooking, fashion and other interests.

This holistic perspective on gamers opens up more opportunities for brands that want to connect with Gen Z and Millennial consumers.

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Many touchpoints. Another interesting aspect about Twitch is that desktop is still the preferred device for their audience, according to Ioos.

Consumers are engaging with gaming content on many different devices and in different contexts, and this allows marketers to finetune their mix. If hardcore gamers and Twitch watchers are on desktops at the home, other more liesure gamers might be playing on mobile while commuting or shopping.

Why we care. All of this means that the strategy has flipped for marketers. Instead of finding a subset of gamers within their audience, they can now look across the billions of gamers and find their audience and subsegments.

Addressability for in-game advertising is still in the early stages, but now there are more opportunities, according to Keith Soljacich, head of innovation at agency Publicis Media.

“More data means more actionable places to find our audiences,” said Soljacich. “[Publishers and tech partners] are building that intelligence for audiences at the same time that opportunities are becoming available to us as marketers.”


About The Author

Chris Wood draws on over 15 years of reporting experience as a B2B editor and journalist. At DMN, he served as associate editor, offering original analysis on the evolving marketing tech landscape. He has interviewed leaders in tech and policy, from Canva CEO Melanie Perkins, to former Cisco CEO John Chambers, and Vivek Kundra, appointed by Barack Obama as the country’s first federal CIO. He is especially interested in how new technologies, including voice and blockchain, are disrupting the marketing world as we know it. In 2019, he moderated a panel on “innovation theater” at Fintech Inn, in Vilnius. In addition to his marketing-focused reporting in industry trades like Robotics Trends, Modern Brewery Age and AdNation News, Wood has also written for KIRKUS, and contributes fiction, criticism and poetry to several leading book blogs. He studied English at Fairfield University, and was born in Springfield, Massachusetts. He lives in New York.


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