Navigating the job search as a candidate can feel pretty opaque. From your perspective, it’s challenging to identify which skills you should prioritize to remain competitive, and which areas of your résumé you need to build out to stand out from the crowd. In other words, what are employers looking for, and how do you gain and demonstrate those skills?

Putting its billions of data points to good use, LinkedIn created a “roadmap” for job seekers in 2020. The company used data from the 660+ million professionals in its network and 20+ million job listings to determine the soft and hard skills that are most in-demand (and likely to get candidates hired) this year.

In order to define what the most in-demand skills really are, LinkedIn looked at skills that are in high demand relative to their supply. Demand was measured by identifying the skills listed on the LinkedIn profiles of people who are getting hired at the highest rates. Only cities with 100,000 LinkedIn members were included in LinkedIn’s evaluation, according to the company.

Though you might typically focus more on hard skills, 57% of business leaders surveyed in 2018 said they believed soft skills were the most important. Perhaps that’s because soft skills translate to any career path and most aspects of being a great employee, teammate, and leader.

We put together a list of LinkedIn’s most in-demand soft skills of 2020 below, along with online courses you can take to foster them. The online-learning sites we included – LinkedIn Learning, Udemy, Coursera, and edX – are among the most popular and inexpensive. You can find more online learning resources here.

Coursera and edX allow you to take classes from the top universities around the world, nearly all of which are free to audit with a fee of $29-$200 to add a verified certificate that you can include on your resume and LinkedIn profile. Udemy offers more than 100,000 online courses and typically charges about $12 per course. LinkedIn Learning comes with a free one-month trial; after that, access is $29.99/month or $299.88/year.

The five most important soft skills that employers are looking for in 2020, according to LinkedIn:


Creativity

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Persuasion

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Collaboration

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Adaptability

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Emotional Intelligence

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