Hard skills are certainly important. Hiring a programmer who can’t code, or a Financial Analyst who doesn’t understand profitability reports, would be pretty disastrous.
However, some have gone too far in focusing on keyword searches instead of looking for a person with the right profile and the ability to lead, think critically, communicate, and be a strong team player. They seek out one specific skill with little or no concern for skills that may take the individual, and company to the next level.
Find a person with great potential. Make sure they have the right tools for their job. But don’t be afraid to hire a great team member who may need a little training to fill your opening. The ability to learn is probably part of what makes them great.
While hard skills are important, competencies like creativity, adaptability and ability to learn on the job are crucial for successful hires. They are also among the most difficult traits to accurately measure. "Soft skills can make or break a hire—and they can also make or break a company," Lobosco said. "As automation and AI [artificial intelligence] continue to reshape entire industries, companies and jobs, strong soft skills—the one thing that machines can't replace—are becoming absolutely vital."