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Evidencing IT skills

Having IT skills are crucial in any role. IT skills are used in communicating, presenting and researching information. This guide provides details on how to demonstrate and evidence your IT skills.

Professionals and graduates interviewed in the Standing out videos confirmed that transferable IT skills are essential whether applying them to your own business or working for an organisation.

IT skills can be acquired throughout your course, practised and honed into an asset that can add value to your application. Several interviewees noted that in this economic climate a way into a company may be via a non-graduate route.

You may aspire to a role where you are using your specialist knowledge and decision-making skills but it is through your competence in IT that you may get your first opportunity, in what is termed an entry level position.

How to demonstrate and evidence IT skills

The level of IT skills expected differs from job to job. Some jobs in the creative industries require knowledge of a specialist program which would be specified in the job description. You may have used IT as part of your course but employers may expect a higher level of competence, along with speed and accuracy. Be able to stipulate the level that you are at and what you are capable of achieving.

It is possible for you to take an additional course while at university to gain the European Computer Driving Licence. If you are worried about your computer skills consider taking this course.

It is important you have awareness of potential problems and how to avoid them, e.g. being able to handle important data without the danger of damaging or losing it.

Having transferable skills in:

  • World Wide Web research.
  • Presentation tools in order to display information to an audience.
  • Spreadsheets to record numerical data and perform calculations.
  • Word processing.
  • E-mail, including features such as mailing lists and diary organisation.
  • Creation of charts to display information graphically.
  • Simple databases and in the use and interrogation of more sophisticated ones.

Be prepared to give examples from your previous experiences and your university course. Some employers may give you a test to ensure that your skill level meets their requirements.

Convince the interviewer that you have a broad understanding of IT, e.g. that Microsoft Windows is not the only operating system and Microsoft Office is not the only suite of office applications.

Using efficient working methods to:

  • Execute tasks choosing the appropriate package for the job.
  • Understand health, safety and security and etiquette issues associated with IT.
  • Use social networks in a professional context.
  • Produce work of a consistently professional standard.

References

Future fit: Preparing graduates for the world of work. (2009) Available at: http://www.cbi.org.uk/pdf/20090326-CBI-FutureFit-Preparing-graduates-for-the-world-of-work.pdf (Accessed: November 2010).

Application of information technology, basic IT skills, including familiarity with word processing, spreadsheets, file management and use of internet search engines.

Confederation of British Industry Definition (CBI) Definition of IT Skills