BlogResume Writing71+ Hard Skills for Your Resume (W/ Definitions and Examples)

71+ Hard Skills for Your Resume (W/ Definitions and Examples)

hard skills

What is one of the best ways to show that you’re the right person for the job? The answer is simple: by showcasing your hard skills.

In addition to your education, work experience, and accomplishments, hard skills display your competence in the field and the ability to get the job done.

With so many different professions and positions out there, there is a vast variety of hard skills. When creating a resume, it’s crucial to focus on the ones that are related to the position you’re applying for.

Keep reading to find out how to pinpoint the right hard skills and properly list them in your resume.

Key Takeaways

  • Hard skills are technical skills you need to get the work done. These skills are specialized and industry-specific, and they form an essential part of a resume.

  • The most sought-after hard skills in 2022 are in computer software, coding, graphic design, digital marketing, and search engine optimization.

  • To list your hard skills on your resume, first identify the relevant ones. Then make sure you don’t mix hard and soft skills. 

  • You should also mention your technical skills throughout the resume, emphasizing them in your resume summary and the work experience section.

What Are Hard Skills?

skills for resume

Hard skills are taught and learned abilities that are objective and can easily be measured. They usually relate to a particular line of work or position, and proficiency in these skills can usually be proven by diplomas, degrees, and certificates.

Certain hard skills can be rather difficult and time-intensive to learn and obtain. But, on the bright side, they can be quite technical and, as a result, highly desirable. 

In most job positions, having appropriate hard skills enables you to perform properly or at all, which is why they are an essential part of your resume. 

Hard Skills to Add to Your Resume

What’s the Difference Between Soft and Hard Skills?

Hard skills are industry-specific and often tightly connected to a career. Soft skills, on the other hand, are transferable and applicable to any job. They describe your personal characteristics that make it easier for you to do your job.

Crafting a good resume is all about finding a balance. You need a healthy mix of both hard and soft skills. Hard skills make you appear capable of doing a job, while soft skills help you be more effective, get along with the team, learn faster, etc.

Top 15 Sought-After Hard Skills by Recruiters in 2024

The current condition of the job market dictates which hard skills are the most wanted. We’ve compiled a list of the 15 most desirable categories, with specific examples of hard skills to look for in 2024.

#1. Computer Software

Computer software skills are amust-have in almost any industry. For example, recruiters usually assume you're familiar with internet browsing and online communication and expect you to engage in these activities in a specific position. Still, these skills may range from broad and general to position-specific and specialized ones. 

On the flip side, many job positions require you to get familiar with specially designed software. For example, engineers use CAD software, while marketers might use automation software.

Here are the most popular computer software hard skills:

Computer Software Hard Skills Examples

  • Typing

  • Web

  • Email

  • MS Office

  • Google Drive

  • Presentation

  • Spreadsheets

#2. Coding

Coding is the fastest growing profession in many parts of the world. Coding careers are among the most in-demand ones, which usually results in high salaries within this industry. 

This field of work features many incredibly specialized skills, though some are more common. Here are the top 5 hard skills every coder needs to have:

Coding Hard Skills Examples

  • Programming languages

  • Databases and SQL

  • Text editors

  • Git version control

  • Data structures and algorithms

#3. Graphic Design

Graphic design is invaluable when it comes to presenting products or services. Combin

Digital Marketing Hard Skills Examples

  • Copywriting

  • Social media marketing

  • Google Analytics

  • A/B testing

  • Email marketing

  • Brand management

  • Project/campaign management

s impressions and sales.

Here are the most important design skills to put on your resume:

Graphic Design Hard Skills Examples

  • Adobe Creative Suite

  • Typography

  • HTML & CSS

  • Logo creation

  • Photo editing

  • Video editing

  • Color theory

  • Digital printing

  • Social media design

#4. Digital Marketing

Digital marketing is the most relevant form of marketing today. With the vast majority of businesses going online and creating a social media presence, good digital marketing skills are crucial. They usually include familiarity with both traditional marketing ideas and new online marketing tools.

A solid digital marketing resume should feature some of the following hard skills: 

Digital Marketing Hard Skills Examples

  • Copywriting

  • Social media marketing

  • Google Analytics

  • A/B testing

  • Email marketing

  • Brand management

  • Project/campaign management

#5. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

SEO experts are tasked with optimizing web pages and published content. The goal is to grow website traffic, strengthen domain authority, increase reach and conversions, and produce a satisfying user experience.

Here are some hard skills any SEO specialist needs to have:

SEO Hard Skills Examples

  • Keyword research

  • Technical & programming skills

  • Data skills

  • Analytics skills

#6. Copywriting

Copywriting is a form of writing for marketing purposes. When writing a copy, the goal is to raise brand awareness or promote a product or service. A proficient copywriter utilizes a range of hard skills to be successful in their business, including:

Copywriting Hard Skills Examples

  • Writing

  • Technical skills

  • Analytics skills

  • Research skills

  • English (or corresponding) language skills

  • Marketing skills

#7. Social Media Marketing

A social media presence is invaluable for any brand that wants to thrive in the current business climate. To make that happen, they use social media marketing—a subset of digital marketing. It helps businesses connect with their target audience on a more personal level. 

Here are some of the top social media marketing skills:

SMM Hard Skills

  • Copywriting

  • Analytics

  • Behavioral psychology

  • Budgeting

  • Paid social media marketing

  • A/B testing

#8. Project Management

Project managers are vital in any business. They ensure that projects meet deadlines and stay within budget. This type of work requires a vast array of general and industry-specific hard skills. 

Here are several hard skills you can include in your project manager resume:

Project Management Hard Skills Examples

  • Project scheduling

  • Project lifecycle management

  • Budgeting

  • Financial modeling

  • Strategic planning

  • Agile software

  • Scrum management

#9. Data Analysis

Due to the digitalization of businesses, data analysis has become a rather technical and growing field. It focuses on gathering, examining, and presenting raw data as useful information to help the team make important business-related decisions. 

To do this, they use the following data analyst skills:

Data Analysis Hard Skills Examples

  • Data visualization

  • Data cleaning

  • SQL and NoSQL

  • Machine learning

  • Spreadsheets

  • Python

  • R

#10. Google Analytics

Professionals who work with Google Analytics are highly trained data analysts who focus on one source of information. In addition to data analysis skills, Google Analytics users utilize specialized tools for work.

Here are the most sought-after hard skills for Google Analytics jobs:

Google Analytics Hard Skills Examples

  • Data measuring

  • Using metrics & dimensions

  • Data exploration & analysis

  • RegEx writing

  • Data customization

  • Data visualization

  • Creating custom reports

#11. Structured Query Language (SQL)

Experts in Structured Query Language are already deeply specialized. However, there are some hard skills that will make you even better in the field of SQL database communication. These include:

SQL Hard Sklls Examples

  • SQL syntax

  • Conditional filters

  • Subqueries

  • Indexes

  • PHP

  • OLAP

  • Joins

#12. Foreign Languages

Knowing a foreign language is a soft skill in many lines of work. But if your job requires you to travel or work with teammates or customers from other countries, this ability turns into a must-have hard skill.

Here are the best hard skills relevant to knowing foreign languages:

Foreign Languages Hard Skills Examples

  • Speaking

  • Writing

  • Grammar

  • Punctuation

  • Spelling

#13. Sales

In one form or another, the skill of selling has been relevant for thousands of years. Modern sales channels are increasingly digital, but some of the core hard skills remain the sameover time.

The must-have sales hard skills include:

Sales Hard Skills Examples

  • Cold-calling

  • Lead generation

  • Customer relationship management (CRM)

#14. Accounting

Accounting has changed over time, and now it is a very technical and software-based job. Needless to say, you may need highly specific hard skills to stand out from your competition, i.e., people with similar educational and professional backgrounds.

Highly requested accounting hard skills include:

Accounting Hard Skills Examples

  • Advanced Microsoft Excel

  • SQL

  • Know Your Customers (KYC)

  • Visual Basic

  • Cognos Analytics

  • Accounting software

  • Anti-Money Laundering (AML)

#15. Customer Service

Customer service has a central position in the field of business. In fact, the profitability of specific businesses often depends on how solid the company’s customer support system is.

Besides the soft skills the positions in this field require, there are several vital hard skills you need to have in your customer service resume:

Customer Service Hard Skills Examples

  • Industry knowledge

  • Product expertise

  • Customer management

  • Analytics skills

  • Digital awareness

How to List Hard Skills on Your Resume?

resume templates

To make sure your resume includes the most prominent hard skills you possess, you need to learn how to identify and list them properly.

Here are 3 rules that will help you do that:

Rule #1. Identify the Relevant Hard Skills You Have

Staying relevant while listing hard skills on your resume is crucial. You can start by checking the job listing and looking into the company. Figure out what kind of hard skills the recruiters are looking for and compare their requirements with the skills you possess. 

After identifying your competencies that match the specific job description, list them in your resume. You should avoid including the skills that aren’t related to the position. For example, if you’re applying for the content writer position, your writing, analytical, and SEO skills would be much more important than your graphic design ones.

Similarly, if you’re applying for a highly technical field (such as software engineering), listing a broader skill (like proficiency in MS Office) is redundant, as the recruiters assume you have it.

Rule #2. Showcase Your Hard Skills in the Skills Section

Recruiters often have to go through many resumes in a short period of time. Because of that, they just skim through the contents, looking for the most important information. 

For this reason, it's essential to have a well-structured resume with a separate section for hard skills. That way, a hiring manager can quickly find what they are looking for, which increases your chances of passing the initial stage of the hiring process.

Don’t mix hard and soft skills together—keep them separate and easily distinguishable. Hard skills make you able to do your job, and recruiters need to see that plainly. Meanwhile, soft skills make you an even better fit for the position once the employer confirms you possess technical competencies.

Rule #3. Mention Your Hard Skills Throughout Your Resume

The more hard skills relevant to the position you have, the better. However, when listing them, it’s important to spread them throughout your resume. After all, the entire resume is your testimony to your hard skills.

Put the key skills in your resume objective/summary. It’s the first section the recruiters will read and the most important one.

Resume Summary Example

Senior Architecture Engineer with 10+ years of experience in managing large-scale projects, creating construction documents, and obtaining permits. Successfully led a 15-person team to complete the project on schedule and under budget, exceeding estimated profitability by 15%.

After a resume summary, the work experience section is the next most important one. This is where you showcase your hard skills while backing them up with results. Check out the next example:

Work Experience Section Example

  • Evaluated costs of 30+ projects, creating estimation reports on construction cost

  • Oversaw 46 construction sites to analyze construction suitability and law compliance

  • Created 127 blueprint designs for corporate clients

61+ Top Hard Skills to Use in Your Resume in 2024

There are so many hard skills in various fields of work that it can be difficult to think of the specific ones related to the position that you’re applying for. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of the top hard skills to use in your resume based on your career path.

5 Management Hard Skills

A good manager has a strong combination of soft and hard skills, which is why it’s imperative to distinguish between the two. The recruiter will want to see both, but your hard skills section has the priority.

Check out the essential management hard skills below:


  • Porter’s Five Forces

  • Six Sigma techniques

  • The McKinsey 7s Framework

  • Spreadsheets

5 Sales Hard Skills

It’s through sales that a company profits from its products or services, which makes skills related to them invaluable.

While plenty of soft skills make a good salesman, specialized hard skills can make a real difference. Some of them include:

  • Prospecting

  • Buyer research

  • Relationship-building

  • Deep product expertise

  • Technology-savviness

6 Customer Service Hard Skills

The cost of acquiring a new customer can be several times higher than keeping an existing one. That makes customer service exceptionally valuable. To be proficient at it, you need to have broad and industry-specific hard skills, such as:

  • Product expertise

  • Marketing skills

  • Technical skills

  • Presentation skills

  • Management skills

  • Digital awareness

6 IT Hard Skills

The IT field is vast, and the hard skills related to this industry vary a lot from one position to another. Many programming languages, software, and applications can be necessary for one IT expert but impractical for another.

Here’s a list of the most common hard skills in the IT sector:


  • JavaScript

  • Wordpress

  • Version control tools

  • Search engine optimization

  • Content management systems

6 Marketing Hard Skills

Marketing remains fundamental in any line of business, as it raises awareness, promotes products, makes sales, and generates profit. While there are many different types of marketing, the core hard skills remain the same.

Some of the best marketing hard skills are:

  • Data analysis

  • Project management

  • Copywriting


  • Social media marketing

  • Email marketing

5 Design Hard Skills

Modern, user-friendly design apps and software can make a novice appear much more skilled than they truly are. That's why it's important to stand out from the competition by emphasizing these top hard skills in the field of design:

  • Software proficiency

  • UI design

  • UX research

  • Product-oriented approach

  • Information architecture

6 Web Development Hard Skills

Web development is a highly-specialized field where proficiency in industry-specific hard skills is invaluable. Some of the most sought-after web development hard skills are:

  • HTML

  • CSS

  • JavaScript

  • Framework proficiency

  • Search engine optimization (SEO)

  • Testing and debugging

5 Finance & Accounting Hard Skills

Depending on your position within the finance and accounting field, you’ll need a mix of tech, analysis, planning, and bookkeeping skills. 

Here are some of the most in-demand accounting hard skills:

  • Account software proficiency

  • Preparing financial statements

  • Developing financial reporting methods

  • Implementing accounting controls

  • Collaborating with regulators

6 Business Hard Skills

Business skills revolve around management and leadership, finance and accounting, communication, and more. Here are the core business hard skills:

  • Base knowledge of economics

  • Data analysis

  • Negotiation

  • Financial accounting

  • Management

  • Leadership

6 Healthcare Hard Skills

Healthcare is one of the career paths where hard skills carry the most weight. Your hard skills show that you can meet the expected standard of care while performing the required functions.

Here are some key healthcare hard skills:

  • Analyzing patient data

  • Monitoring vitals

  • Regulatory practices knowledge

  • Chart requirements

  • State survey readiness

  • Tech proficiency in relatable hardware and software

6 Engineering Hard Skills

Engineering is a vast field that requires a deeply specialized set of hard skills. Depending on a specific position and job requirements, some of them can help you prosper in this industry more quickly than other employees with similar backgrounds.

Some of the most common hard engineering skills are:

  • Math

  • Troubleshooting

  • Knowledge of applicable laws

  • Proficiency in relatable software

  • Project management

  • Knowledge of manufacturing processes

Hard Skills FAQ

#1. What are 5 hard skills examples?

Hard skills are much less transferable than soft skills since they are industry-specific. They vary a lot based on your career path or even your job position in a company.

Business hard skills revolve around knowledge of economics and financial accounting. On the other hand, web development skills involve CSS, JavaScript, and framework proficiency.

#2. How do you list hard skills on a resume?

When listing hard skills on a resume, it’s important to spread them out and use them in the most important sections. Make sure to put your key skills in the resume summary. Then add more in the work experience section of your resume, where you can back them up with factual results.

#3. Is training a hard skill difficult?

Depending on your career path, training a hard skill can be anywhere from moderately difficult to extremely challenging. Unlike soft skills, which you can obtain without any explicit teaching, hard skills are learned through specific instructions and trial-and-error.

#4. Why are hard skills important?

Hard skills are the backbone of the job. The more complex and technical the line of work you’re in, the more important they will be for your progress. Soft skills can help you reach the next stage of the hiring process or get a job, but you usually can’t even apply without adequate hard skills. 

Closing Thoughts

Hard skills are the foundational building blocks of your resume. If you identify those that are relevant to the position you’re applying for and list them properly throughout your resume, your chances of getting the job significantly increase.

We hope that our comprehensive list of the best hard skills for 2024 can help you land your dream job. Go through it until you find all the skills you can use, and you’ll be well on your way to creating the perfect resume!

Kervin Peterson
Kervin Peterson
Career Coach
Whether you need help preparing for an interview, optimizing your LinkedIn profile, or creating a resume, you can rest assured that our dear Kervin Peterson can help! Kervin is a man who can turn obstacles into experience with his eyes closed, always striving to bring the most to the table. Other than being a career coach, he’s a new dad and loves nothing more than hitting the gym and spending time with his family!

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