The most sought-after skills set for 2021

Last year was a nerve-racking rollercoaster ride, to say the least. But like with any other negative experience in life, there are numerous lessons we can take from it. Some of the most important coronavirus silver linings are work-related abilities you’ll need in 2021. Our article will explore 7 of the most essential skills for future hybrid working models.

1. Adaptability

It’s no secret that all of us had to be pretty resilient during the previous 12 months. No matter if we’ve been looking for a new job, adjusting to working remotely, or simply following health guidelines at our office, adaptability was a big part of our lives in 2020. For better or worse, last year’s trends will likely continue for the unforeseeable future. Hence, it’s important to learn from them and be ready for whatever life throws at us.

Although not a tech skill necessarily, adaptability is essential for responding proactively to all sorts of new challenges. Being able to think forward is what separates you from your peers and will allow you to keep your head above the water once the times get hard. And since teams will keep working on new, promising technologies, it’s key to remain on alert for whatever comes our way.

2. Change management

As we’ve said, adaptability is key to making sure you respond to new challenges that you come across. And while this will be essential for everyone, the big players will have to step up and be able to manage and guide the firm’s further actions. Their management skills will eventually decide whether we’ll go under or not. Hence, being able to implement fast and effective change will help them stay afloat.

Some experts suggest that change management will be one of the hottest assets this year and in the future. The ability to facilitate the process of change will be a skill on your resume that everyone will look forward to. Businesses will continue to transform towards digital practices while moving away from their analog traditions. And as such, doing it the right way and in time will decide its eventual success.

3. Cybersecurity

Another specific skill to put on this list is cybersecurity. And since it’s 2021, this shouldn’t come as any surprise. It’s an ongoing problem for any industry around the world. Everyone is trying to find new ways of protecting and maintaining their businesses these days.

One of the reasons for this skill set is the new norm of working from home. Doing your job remotely is prone to all kinds of security issues. Hence, perfecting protection methods is looking to become even more important in the coming months and years.

Cybersecurity is a top priority for all CEOs and heads of big businesses. Although it has numerous benefits, working remotely comes at the price of security issues. Some of them are simply user and tech-related, while others stem from other sources. For example, people using personal devices for work or taking advantage of their company’s hardware for private stuff.

4. Data visualization

Unlike the previous three skill sections on our list, this one is a bit more out there. Experts like Mark Greville — vice president of architecture at Work human — believe that data visualization is the next big thing for the future. Besides our technical skills in the ever-growing world of big tech, we’ll need to keep our knowledge of tools up to date. In other words, data visualization is a big part of that. 

Businesses will need to come up with new and interactive tools for data visualization. By rethinking how we commune with software, they’ll reshape the current standards and set up new norms. It all comes down to amazing insights, and data visualization is all about that. New and fresh ideas of visually appealing ways of interacting with data are the future of the post-pandemic world.

5. Emotional intelligence

Hiring companies have a lot on their hands when it comes to the emotional levels of their applicants. It’s pretty much obvious that COVID-19 took a big toll on our well-being. From mental to physical problems, it’s safe to say none of us are the same as before. The need for empathy is more evident with each passing day. Hence, businesses should strive for emotional intelligence.

But this isn’t just a nice gesture towards your peers and friends — it’s a great business decision. Increasing emotional intelligence (EQ) will help relieve stress in work environments, ultimately boosting people’s careers. Hiring managers will prioritize empathy levels and interpersonal skills more than anything else. And you know what — we think that’s just great.

6. JavaScript

When it comes to job searching and figuring out what types of skills are most in need these days, there’s no better way than using Upwork. It’s such a useful platform that we can’t help but feel that without it, things would be so much worse even without the pandemic raging outside. This freelance platform also provides its users with lists of skills that were most sought-after annually. And last year, it was JavaScript.

In reality, the demand for it never stopped. Ever since WP Engine did their survey on what’s the most versatile coding language and found JavaScript to be it — its popularity sky-rocketed. Moreover, programmers say it’s also the easiest to learn alongside Python and HTML. And if you take into consideration that JavaScript means a minimum of 500 different types of projects, it’s more than worth it keeping up with it or learning it from the ground up.

7. Lifelong learning

One thing we had our hands full of during the previous year is a ton of free time. Because of lockdowns and the general risk of going out, we found ourselves trying to learn new skills and improve the ones we already had. Hence, you could argue that 2020 was a monumental year for learning. And being ready to improve just got even more important for hiring managers.

Heads of HR already see the skill of willingness to learn as a no-brainer when it comes to applicants. They want to see a passion for learning new things. And being able to provide that to your employer is what will separate you from the rest. Every day should be like a new day at school, meaning lifelong learning is as relevant to the job as much as any other skill listed in this article.