Employability Skills

Individuals require many skills to be college and career ready, including academic knowledge, technical expertise, and a set of general, cross-cutting abilities called employability skills.

Employability skills are general skills that are necessary for success in the labor market at all employment levels and in all sectors. These skills have a number of names—soft skills, workforce readiness skills, career readiness skills—but they all speak to the same set of core skills that employers want.

What are Employability Skills?
Employability skills are general skills that are necessary for success in the labor market at all employment levels and in all sectors.  These skills, which may be taught through the education and workforce development systems, fall into three broad categories:

  • Applied Knowledge:  The thoughtful integration of academic knowledge and technical skills, put to practical use in the workplace.

  • Effective Relationships:  The interpersonal skills and personal qualities that enable individuals to interact effectively with clients, coworkers, and supervisors.

  • Workplace Skills:  The analytical and organizational skills and understandings that employees need to successfully perform work tasks.

Visit the Employability Skills Framework website created by the U.S. Department of Education for additional information specific to educators and employers.