Most in-demand skills for 2023, according to LinkedIn

LinkedIn today released an exhaustive list of skills employers prioritize when recruiting, posting, and hiring for jobs on the company’s website.

“It’s true that topics like layoffs are trending on LinkedIn and conversations around ‘recession’ are up nearly 900% since last year,” the company said in the report. “The rate of global LinkedIn member job change has flatlined for the first time since March 2021. No matter the setback, looming re-org, or change in strategy, learning in-demand skills can help individuals and teams reach their career goals in 2023, even in the face of a tough macro environment.”

LinkedIn’s list includes both general skills, such as overall hard skills for any marketplace, and expertise required by specific industries, such as technology. The company also pointed to its online training courses for the skills it listed.

When it came to the top 10 overall hard skills, IT led the list and filled most of the top 10 slots.

Number one on that list? Software development “that companies need to build the products that we depend on in our personal and professional lives,” LinkedIn said. Data management skills are also prominent. Skills such as SQL (No. 2 on the list) help companies manage and make sense of data across the business, and they remain in high demand.

The other hard skills in the top 10 are:

  • Finance (such as the ability to understand corporate financial statements).
  • Python (Programming Language).
  • Java.
  • Data Analysis.
  • JavaScript.
  • Cloud Computing (core concepts, etc.).
  • Operations (such as quality management for operational excellence).
  • Customer Relationship Management (such as Saleforce training).

Future proofing a career with hard, soft skills

The most sought-after IT skills in today’s job market include a mix of hard skills, such as SQL and cloud computing, and more general skills such as project management and the more general “management” and “customer service.”

“These skills can help you future-proof your career as a marketer, financial analyst or accountant, project manager, business professional, IT professional, engineer, or sales professional,” LinkedIn said. “Employers are looking for project managers who are capable of providing this guidance with understanding, patience, and confidence. Even the hardest skills included here, like engineering, marketing, and strategy, speak to a need for this understanding.”

LinkedIn determined the most in-demand expertise by looking at skills most sought after based on six months’ data — between April and October 2022 — from employers, hirers, and job-posters on its job posting site. Demand was measured by identifying skills possessed by members who were hired or InMailed, and the skills listed in paid job postings.

In demand hard skills were identified using the same methodology with an additional filter to exclude some of the most common, non-specialized skills.

LinkedIn noted that workplace projects are becoming increasingly complex and technical, and managers need to have a high-level technical, or at least strategic, understanding of a project’s importance to manage effectively.

Aneesh Raman, vice president of LinkedIn’s “Opportunity Project,” which produced the top skills list, said every company right now is either a tech company or a tech enabled company, “even if they don’t fully realize it.”

“That means tech skills are becoming some of the most transferable skills across sectors, so it’s never been more important to keep your tech skills sharp,” he said. “LinkedIn data shows that skill sets for jobs globally have changed by around 25% since 2015, with this number expected to double by 2027. Much of this change has been driven by new technologies emerging and altering how we all get our jobs done. Not everyone is a tech professional, but everyone can become tech fluent.”

Cloud computing skills showed up on more than market in LinkedIn’s most coveted skills.

With that in mind, the top hot skills for IT work are:

  • Management.
  • SQL (experience).
  • Microsoft Office (Excel essential training, Office 365, etc.).
  • Project Management.
  • Analytical Skills (basic data analytic skills).
  • Communication (such as effective technical communication skills).
  • Customer Service (IT service desk skills).
  • Leadership (for first time managers, etc.).
  • Cloud Computing.
  • Python (Programming Language).

Hybrid, remote work change skills needed for IT pros 

Hybrid and remote work environments have also created more challenges for IT shops, which may not have access to employee devices. In the absence of in-person access, Communication and Project Management skills become more important, LinkedIn said.

“IT pros have to be able to help their fellow employees through troubleshooting at a distance, all the while managing their own time and projects carefully,” the report said.

It’s no surprise, Raman added, that some of the most in-demand skills this year include management, communication, and leadership. “Soft skills get jobs,” he said in an email reply to Computerworld.

“Especially now— given all the changes to how we work with the rise of hybrid work and the impact of new technology coming from AI — demonstrating interpersonal skills like being able to communicate effectively across platforms and time zones or lead a team through change are crucial,” Raman said.

In fact, when looking deeper at skills such as management or communication, there are a lot of the same innate skills, such as empathy, emotional intelligence, and patience, according to Raman.

“When you hire managers that have these skills, you create cultures that are resilient and adaptable,” Raman said.

As with other roles on this list, the skills demonstrate that employers value human skills, even in the most technical of roles.

Late last month, online job site Indeed released its list of the 25 best jobs in the US, and there was more than one similarity to LinkedIn’s list. Indeed’s top job slot went to full stack developer, which offers a median annual salary of $130,000 and allows for a mostly remote or hybrid workplace.

In fact, eight tech jobs were among the top 10 positions on the Indeed list, compared to just two tech jobs in the top 10 on last year’s list

LinkedIn’s list for the most in-demand skills for engineering were also, as expected, dominated by the need for technology expertise. Java and JavaScript topped the list.

“JavaScript is commonly used to develop dynamic web pages and platforms that automatically update with the latest information and multimedia required,” LinkedIn said. “Java has an even broader range of applications, but it’s most useful for designing web and phone apps, as well as cloud computing. Meanwhile, SQL, the third-most on-demand engineering skill, is mostly used for database administration.”

Also, in the top 10 sought-after skills list for engineering jobs:

  • SQL.
  • Python (Programming Language).
  • Cascading Style Sheets (CSS).
  • HTML.
  • Management.
  • Cloud Computing.
  • Git (and GitHub).
  • C++.

Skills-based hiring is in

Communication, leadership, and teamwork are also high on the list of desireable soft skills, LinkedIn said.

“These skills help professionals succeed in an ongoing hybrid work environment,” LinkedIn said. “It turns out that remote and hybrid work makes the need for human connection and communication skills more important than ever, and companies need professionals who can do this well.”

College degree requrements are also fading from LinkedIn job postings.

For a long time, Raman said, businesses hired candidates primarily based on what LinkedIn calls “pedigree signals” — what school someone attended, what degree they received, where they worked, and what job title they had.

“That was never the most efficient or equitable way to match talent and opportunity, but it worked at least for those who could gain those pedigree signals,” Raman said. “That’s starting to change. Not only are people eager to be seen for the skills they have, not just the degree they have (or don’t), but hirers are realizing that by putting skills at the center of recruitment and defining their open roles by the skills needed to do the job, they can find better matches and tap into more diverse talent pools.”

In the US, job postings that don’t have degree requirements are up from 15% in January 2020 to 24% in 2022, according to Raman. And employers are increasingly looking beyond who a job candidate knows or what school they attended to find great talent; more than 45% of hirers on LinkedIn now explicitly use skills data to fill their roles.

“While degrees are not going away anytime soon, more employers are realizing that by just filtering candidates through this narrow lens, they actually miss out on great skilled candidates that are out there ready to do the job,” Raman said.

Copyright © 2023 IDG Communications, Inc.


This website uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you accept our use of cookies.