Technological advancements are reshaping workplaces across industries and redefining many careers. Identifying professional skills to improve can help you stay ahead of the curve in a dynamic and rapidly evolving job market.
According to a 2023 survey by McKinsey & Co.(opens new window), 90% of companies have embraced digital transformation in the last two years. This rapid digital revolution has led to a widespread talent crisis as the number of jobs requiring technical proficiency outpaces the current workforce’s skill set.
Savvy professionals can bridge this divide and future-proof their careers by upskilling. This process focuses on learning new professional skills that align with the changing demands of the modern and future workplace.
Let’s look at the top professional skills to improve for 2024.
What are professional skills?
The demand for digital skills will likely continue to soar as companies increasingly rely on technology to improve operations and stay competitive. According to a recent Statista survey(opens new window), these are the top five skills recruiters are seeking in candidates:
- Web development (59%)
- DevOps (36%)
- Database software (28%)
- AI / machine learning / deep learning (25%)
- Mobile development (23%)
What types of professional skills are there?
Most careers require workers to have a diverse and adaptable set of skills in their toolbox. There are two main categories of professional abilities: technical and soft skills.
Technical or job-specific skills
Technical skills are measurable and observable abilities used to complete specific tasks in a particular profession. For instance, Developers need to know programming languages, while Cloud Engineers must have expertise in cloud security practices. People typically develop technical skills through educational programs or on-the-job training.
Soft skills are non-measurable behavioral traits and personal qualities used to interact with others and navigate workplace challenges. For example, Developers need strong communication and collaboration skills to contribute to stand-up meetings and share project updates with stakeholders. There are many ways to develop soft skills, such as volunteering, joining a public speaking group, and reading relevant blog posts.
The top professional skills to improve in 2024
These in-demand technical skills can help you advance your career or chart a new path in 2024.
According to Indeed, the average salary for Machine Learning Engineers(opens new window) is $161,000. Additionally, the McKinsey report indicates that the demand for generative AI careers grew by 44% between 2021 and 2022.
Businesses increasingly rely on skilled Software Developers to create, implement, and maintain innovative technologies. For example, an automotive company may hire Software Engineers to design sensors for autonomous vehicles.
Essential software engineering skills include front- and back-end development, database design, and debugging. Software Developers must also be proficient in relevant coding languages. For instance, Developers often use Swift and Kotlin for mobile app development.
Improve your workplace interactions with these crucial soft skills.
Convey messages and share information through email, face-to-face conversations, written documents, and other modes of communication.
Plan and execute projects effectively by setting goals, meeting deadlines, delegating tasks, and motivating team members.
Public speaking skills
Communicate ideas with audiences using body language, storytelling techniques, and visual aids.
Creative problem solving
Use critical thinking and creativity to develop innovative solutions to business problems.
Best ways to improve professional skills
1. Courses with e-learning platforms
Elearning platforms like Coursera and LinkedIn Learning offer low-cost or free courses on many technical skills, such as data analytics and web development. These courses provide flexibility and convenience but typically don’t include personal mentorship or interaction with peers.
2. Workshops or personal research
Many professional organizations offer short workshops on trending skills and technologies. These events can help you network and stay up-to-date in your field. You can also use online resources like articles and videos to research skills independently.
3. Full-time or part-time bootcamp
Bootcamps are intensive learning experiences that allow you to develop career-ready skills. However, bootcamps can be pricey, and you may need to put your career on pause if you enroll full-time. Additionally, some bootcamps have poor career outcomes, so it’s essential to investigate these programs thoroughly.
4. Networking with other professionals
Other professionals in your field can offer guidance and resources for professional development. For instance, you could attend conferences to learn from industry experts or shadow professionals in your dream role.
5. Pursue an on-the-job apprenticeship
An on-the-job apprenticeship allows you to stay in your current job as you develop new skills. You’ll gain practical experience as you complete real projects under the supervision of experienced mentors. Multiverse’s apprenticeship programs are free and let you earn a salary as you hone your skills.
Build new professional skills with Multiverse without quitting your job
The best time to prepare for the jobs of tomorrow is today. Become a trailblazer in your field and increase your value to employers by staying ahead of emerging trends and technologies.
Upgrade your professional skills with Multiverse’s upskilling certification. without disrupting your current job. Our innovative curricula help apprentices develop expertise in advanced analytics, digital business, and other areas experiencing rapid growth. You’ll also receive personal and professional support from our seasoned developmental coaches. Get in touch today for more information.