There is no doubt that choosing the best candidate for a job can be a real dilemma, especially when you have more than one person who would be great for the role. Traditionally, we look for academic qualifications, relatable experience, and other hard skills that give us the confidence to believe we have found the right person. However, with more pressure than ever before to find the ‘perfect fit’, more people are turning to soft skills to set candidates apart.
Why Are Soft Skills So Important
When surveyed by Linkedin, 92% of HR professionals stated that soft skills are as, if not more important than hard skills and that when they have experienced a bad hire, 89% of them said it was due to them lacking the soft skills required!
When you stop to consider the level of recruitment pressure that life science companies face, it makes sense to consider the soft skills essential to vacant roles. When a candidate is hired, you can then be confident that they will settle and perform well as part of a cohesive and productive workforce.
The Five Soft Skills You Should Be Considering
When it comes to finding the best candidate, you will need to consider the following five soft skills that are essential for your firm:
- Communication skills – life science is an industry that demands collaboration between a wide range of people. Ensuring that a candidate has strong communication skills will give you the confidence to know that they will be able to deliver the business and scientific messages you need them to.
- Problem-solving skills – this is an intrinsic part of the life science industry, especially when it comes to innovation. The direction to an endpoint is rarely a straight line. Finding an individual who can employ a range of problem-solving techniques will make you more likely to enjoy positive outcomes.
- Decision-making – when it comes to decision-making in life sciences, you will need candidates who can take the available information and data, assess it, and make a well-judged decision to ensure your business goals are met. This means finding someone who is both analytical and confident.
- Time management – with deadlines, meetings, and collaborations, any life science candidate should be able to effectively manage their time so that they do not slow the progress of others or stall in their work.
- Networking – communicating effectively with others is an essential soft skill, especially when getting clients’ and colleagues’ trust. A candidate should know when to empathize and how to keep others on track, even in the face of disruption.
While assessing soft skills during the recruitment process can be challenging, it is not impossible. Getting the right questions and assessments organized before you meet candidates and honing the application process will help you ensure that soft skills are given the importance they deserve.