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While knowing the latest IT security measures or top marketing strategies are important, they aren't the skills that are going to pay off in the long run for today's college graduates, new research shows.
A study by Kaplan University's College of Business and Technology discovered that critical thinking and written communications are the most important skills college graduates majoring in business or information technology programs will need to succeed in the work force.
"Technology becomes obsolete quite rapidly," said Kaplan University professor Lynne Williams. "Good communication skills remain with you throughout your working life."
When searching for work, the professors surveyed felt that being an articulate communicator and having a strong work ethic would elevate graduates in competing for business and IT jobs.
Additionally, during the interview process, those surveyed said that communication skills, the ability to demonstrate potential value and professional experience are most important in making a good impression.
"Work on your transferable skills, skills that you can use in any specialty such as oral and written communication, organization, critical thinking, networking, time management, confidence, office productivity software, presentation, attention to detail, etc.," said Kaplan University professor Carol Edwards. "These skills can be used in all business arenas."
The study found an overall optimistic view on the job market for new grads. Nearly half of those surveyed believe the outlook for business and IT graduates will continue to remain positive over the next 12 months. Industries identified by the survey respondents showing the greatest promise for IT career growth include information security and forensics, mobile computing and information systems management for IT grads and accounting, finance and marketing/internet marketing for business students.
The study was based on surveys of 250 Kaplan University faculty members.