Soft skills are the future of UK business. Here’s why.

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Soft skills are the future of UK business. Here’s why.

People are at the heart of any business. It doesn’t matter what the business is, or what sector it’s in, it’s the people that make a business what it is.  However, as far back as the creation of the Spinning Jenny the role of people in industry has been slowly replaced by machines and automation. Jump forward 250 years and the advent of computing, the internet, and even artificial intelligence, means more and more of the work people would have traditionally done is being done by machines. So where does that leave human beings in business? It leaves us with the job of being human.

People don’t trust machines

Regardless of how technologically advanced we become as a society one thing will never change and that is the fact that people like to talk to people. Studies have shown that people don’t trust machines like IVR systems and would much rather talk to a human being. As more and more jobs start being done by machines, it will become the job of the people to be the interface between the customer and the machines doing the work. As this trend becomes more and more apparent, soft skills will be increasingly important as part of a high functioning employee’s skillset.

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Soft skills can be a bit of a vague term, but basically it incorporates all the things that are required to have good human to human interaction. That can be things like communication skills, team work skills, conflict resolution, and even things like listening ability.

Why do soft skills matter?

These skills matter, and will always matter in business because these are the skills needed to provide your customers with a satisfying user experience. As more of the work businesses do is handled by computers and automated processes, the quality of an end product will matter less (as in theory the automation process will allow competitors to provide the same level of quality), and it is the user journey to accessing the end product that businesses will sell.

Having staff with the best soft skills will ensure your customers have the best possible experience, so these skills will increasingly be demanded by employers. As traditional jobs like bookkeeping, maintenance, and eventually even creative jobs like graphic design are outsourced to machines, the people in a business will be walking brand ambassadors, responsible for engaging with customers, and ensuring every transaction runs smoothly with a happy result. All of this starts with soft skills.

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