Job market: the most valued cognitive skills

To find a job in the digital age, one needs more than just technical skills. Interpersonal qualities are critical to success in an increasingly complex and diverse work environment. Professionals who can master these competencies will be better prepared to thrive and face the challenges and opportunities presented by the labour market of the future.


The new technological revolution we are experiencing has brought about an accelerated digitisation and automation of many tasks, driven by artificial intelligence, which is radically transforming the labour market. This radical evolution of the nature of work requires new skills and personal competencies that will be critical for future jobs.

It is a paradigm shift that is enabling a reduction in workload without reducing productivity and could also make it feasible to reduce working hours to facilitate work-life balance, reducing stress and improving workers’ health and well-being. Even so, it may have a negative impact on people by replacing some jobs with automation or reducing available working hours.

In this context, while some jobs will become obsolete, others will emerge to replace those that will disappear. We expect this to happen in terms of both quantity and quality of employment, but at the very least it will require effort and investment in education and training.


Problem-solving, creativity and adaptability

Although there will continue to be many skilled jobs that will see little change, the labour market will increasingly require more dynamic and creative professionals who have a strong ability to adapt to change.

In fact, according to a study by the Skills and Occupations Barometer of Catalonia, promoted by the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC) and PIMEC, this skill is most highly valued by companies when hiring future professionals. Specifically, it was found that 51% of job offers published in Catalonia in 2023 required this skill, which is also in demand in most sectors (96%) and occupations (68%).

Likewise, the most valued qualities are the ability to assume responsibility, manage time, and accept criticism. These data are especially relevant in ICT occupations, which also concentrate the demand for people with the ability to “think creatively” and “solve problems” which, on the other hand, is significantly requested in 70% of the sectors and 40% of the occupations,

On the other hand, the barometer found that the importance of “teamwork” is particularly concentrated in professional, scientific and technical activities, where 24% of vacancies require this skill. In any case, and as Antoni Cañete, president of Pimec, emphasised, we are talking about “soft skills”, which can be applied to all professions and refer to “very human, transferable and transversal” skills.


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  1. Manuel Bullich BuenoManuel Bullich Bueno says:

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