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Essential Qualities for Any Skilled Trades Job

By Jason Noha | Apr 18, 2017

You might have heard, when writing your CV, make sure you include _____. Or heard this advice, if you’re in an interview, talk a lot about your experience with ______. Filling in the blanks is hard, especially since a lot of career advice is geared toward office workers – not those working in skilled trades or as technicians.

Just last week, posted “14 Must-Have Skills for Entry-Level Workers,” a piece filled with nuggets of information for those who will primarily work at a desk. The top 14 skills listed were: 

  • Communication
  • Microsoft Office
  • Prior Experience and Knowledge
  • Analytics
  • Ability to Learn Quickly
  • Collaboration
  • Organizational Skills
  • Photoshop
  • Drive
  • Social Media
  • Punctuality
  • Customer Service
  • Positive Attitude

While I generally agree with those skills for an office worker, they don’t fit 80% of the field careers we have at TDIndustries. Here, our HVAC technicians and pipefitters are not expected to have photo-editing skills or website coding experience. While positive attitudes, customer service, communication, and punctuality are certainly desired skills for any company, as a tradesperson what do you highlight? At TD, some technical qualities we look at are:

  • Education/Certification(s)
    Be sure to include any training courses you’ve completed that are relevant to the position or trade you are applying for. Do you have specific certifications on equipment from various manufacturers? These are big pluses and will get your application higher consideration.

  • Hands-on Experience
    Hands-on experience is a must-have, especially for positions that require a minimum number of years worked. Include all experience related to performing regular maintenance tasks, repairing systems, construction, or manufacturing.

  • Required Licenses
    For some jobs, like those in the Plumbing or Electrical fields, licenses are required by state law. If you don’t have yours, I strongly encourage you to get your Apprentice License. Further your career with your Journeyman’s License and even Master’s. These licenses will carry you far in your career, whether you are with TD or another contractor.

  • Confidence & Self-Promotion
    Candidates who successfully demonstrate their knowledge on paper – resumes and applications – are already halfway there. Have confidence in your work history, especially during your interview. It’s normal to be nervous, but be ready to share specific details on your work history. For example, a candidate that knows how much HVAC equipment tonnage they’ve worked on will have an advantage over a candidate who does not know.  

JAson Noha.jpgAbout the expert: Jason Noha is a TDIndustries Recruiter with 10 years of experience in recruiting for positions from painters and mechanics, to pilots, and corporate vice presidents. He focuses on hiring new TDPartners in the North Texas region. Connect with Jason on LinkedIn. Apply for open positions now:


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