The economic slump is leading employers to have higher expectations from job candidates. Knowing what recruiters rank as the critical skills and attributes of prospective employees can help anyone seeking employment.

According to a “Job Outlook 2012 Survey” conducted by the National Association of Colleges and Employers, the two most important skills/qualities are an ability to work within a team structure and to verbally communicate with individuals inside and outside the organization.

The survey found that a candidate’s ability to make decisions and solve problems; obtain and process information; and plan, organize, and prioritize work are also valued skills.

Closely behind these desired traits are the ability to analyze quantitative data, the amount of technical knowledge a candidate has as related to the job, the ability to create and/or edit written reports, and how well a person can influence others.

Topping the list of traits sought after on the resume are teamwork, leadership, and written communication skills.

Contact Maureen Roach at (309) 438-5823 or by email at to learn how you can best market your experience and skills/abilities to employers, or have a resume critiqued.