Blog Article

Top 6 Skills to Hire for in 2024

Two women in an office pointing at a paper

If you’re growing your workforce this year, it’s good to know which skills are in the highest demand and how they can impact your business. We’ve rounded up the top 6 skills you should be on the lookout for in your applicant pool in 2024. From hard skills to soft skills, the abilities that a candidate brings to the table have the most value to your organization when they have long-term implications. 

The top 6 skills to hire for in 2024 are:

  • Emotional intelligence
  • Generative AI 
  • People Management
  • Data Analysis
  • Problem solving 
  • Communication 

Let’s dive in to see the upfront and long-term value of each of these skills for your business. 

1. Generative AI 

2024 feels like the year that Generative AI has come into its own, and as a result, AI-savvy hires are a hot commodity. 

As a relatively new and currently-evolving skill, hiring candidate who are comfortable and competent with generative AI software like Chat GPT and Google’s Gemini means that you’ll be able to stay on top of whatever curveballs the AI era throws at your industry. 

It is also a signal that a candidate subscribes to the philosophy of continuous learning and improvement, a valuable trait that will help your business adapt in the long term. 

2. Emotional Intelligence 

Emotional intelligence (EI) is one of the most critical abilities to keep your eyes peeled for when hiring this year. EI is considered by many to be the new IQ – it’s a strong signal that an employee will be able to seamlessly integrate into your existing team. 

Hiring people with high EI means that you will have a workforce that is able to manage their emotions, be considerate of the way their coworkers feel, and be able to articulate and conduct themselves professionally even in times of stress. The end result? A positive and healthy work environment that people thrive in, leading to less turnover, improved morale, and better productivity. 

But EI isn’t easy to see on a resume. Innovative assessments like Criteria’s Emotify allow you to reliably evaluate a candidate’s EI during the hiring process, while behavioral interview questions are a great way to determine how candidates have handled emotionally-fraught situations in the past.

3. People Management

The data is clear: good managers make all the difference! 

Recent research from McKinsey shows that strong management skills – especially those of middle managers – are strongly correlated with better bottom line performance. Plus, they found that managers are the biggest drivers of employee experience at every level of an organization. As the saying goes, people leave bad managers, not bad jobs. 

So when you’re hiring in 2024, look for people who have a proven track record of successful people management. In the long run, you’ll find that your workforce is better able to upskill, have better team performance, and improved retention. 

4. Data Analysis

You don’t have to be diving in data lakes for data analysis to be a skill you look for when hiring this year. Our ability to gather and track data has dramatically expanded in the last decade, and businesses of all sizes and in all industries benefit from employees who are able to interpret data quickly and accurately. 

Strong data analysis skills make it easy for your team to understand both where your organization is now and what changes should – or need to – be made for your business to succeed. 

5. Problem solving 

No matter the job, problem solving is an invaluable skill that should be considered when hiring. Candidates with strong problem-solving abilities become employees who rise to the occasion and get things done. 

Hiring for problem solving skills can be a bit tricky, since many candidates will list in on their resume, but it’s hard to confirm without actually putting that skill to the test. Cognitive ability assessments are a great way to evaluate your candidates ability to solve problems and thinking creatively to find solutions. 

6. Communication

Effective communication is always in demand. In 2024, hire candidates with solid communication skills who can connect with their future coworkers, managers, and customers. Communication skills can be found in a well-organized resume, a compelling cover letter, and at any point in the interview process. 

When you hire for communication skills, you’ll get employees who can distill complex ideas, share their thoughts and feelings effectively, and work well with others. It’s a transferable skill that adds value to your organization, no matter the industry or role you’re hiring for. 


The top skills to hire for in 2024 are those that will benefit your business both immediately and in the future. Big Data and AI are here to stay, and problem solving, effective communication, and strong managerial skills are always sought-after. So when you’re writing job descriptions or reviewing resumes, keep these top 6 skills in mind. 

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