Employers share the only five buzzwords they want to see on your resume.

Hunting for a new job in 2019? Then you probably want to give your resume a bit of a polish.

And while you’re at it, there are some keywords to include to help your resume stand out. According to research by SEEK, these are the top five buzzwords to include if you want your CV or LinkedIn profile to get you noticed.

Recruiters say employers are looking for people with these qualities:

  1. Adaptability
  2. Analytical thinking
  3. A proactive approach
  4. Empathy
  5. Resilience

So what exactly do these words mean, and how can you demonstrate you have the goods to back up your claim?

1. Adaptability

By now you’ve probably heard a variation of the prediction that 85 per cent of the jobs that people will hold in 2030 don’t even exist right now. It’s for this reason that employers want employees who can adapt to an ever-changing work climate.

“Employers want their people to be able to pivot to a new role or area of responsibility as things change and to upskill to remain on top of new trends relevant to their job function or industry,” managing director of Hays in Australia & New Zealand Nick Deligiannis says.

Deligiannis suggests using examples from recent roles – such as undertaking a course to broaden your skill set – to show that you’re adaptable.

2. Analytical thinking

Basically, employers want to know that they’re getting someone who’s going to be able to interpret information and come up with great ideas and well-reasoned decisions.

Six Degrees Executive’s NSW director Mike Dickson says the best way to demonstrate your analytical thinking is to use the STAR method – situation, task, activity, result.

“Bring it to life with real examples that show the impact you have made with these skills,” he says.

“Too often, candidates want to talk about the result, which is meaningless without the situation or the actions they undertook.”

3. A proactive approach

Proactiveness is one of the few qualities our computer counter-parts find hard to replicate – which is why it’s becoming more and more valuable as jobs once held by humans become increasingly automated. (You’ve seen Hidden Figures, right? Computer was once a term for a person who computed as a job.)


So employers want staff who don’t need to be told what to do so much, says Practice Leader of Digital, Projects & Technology, Davidson Technology Qamran Somjee. They want employees who can come up with their own ideas and solutions.

4. Empathy

Co-founder and Co-CEO of Think Talent Natalie Firth says employers are looking for candidates who are empathetic to customer needs.

“Empathy is becoming more valued in the workplace. Candidates should stress that they always consider the customer’s perspective,” she says.

“They should also list ‘empathy’ as a skill in their resume and explain how it has helped them in their career.”

5. Resilience

Again, in ever-changing workplace processes and technology, resilience is a skill that says to employers “they’ll be able to cope with anything”.

Andrea McDonald, director of u&u Recruitment Partners, says the best way to demonstrate you have this quality is to share an example of when you overcame a workplace challenge or picked yourself up after a failure.

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