What Employers Seek


Employers want to know you are able to take part in adult conversation, listen to instruction and understand it well enough to paraphrase it back to them. It is important to accurately take down any details or messages you’re required to and clarify politely if you’re confused.

Try to be personable and clear in your communication with customers, team members and employers, by not speaking too quickly, using inappropriate slang or mumbling. Being able to communicate well makes you come across more professional, capable and engaged.


Teamwork is vital in all workplaces. Employers will look to see if you engage with team members and get along with others of differing ages, experiences or ethnic backgrounds. Do you carry more than your fair share of the work? Do you wait to be chased up to help out, or offer to help out? Do you show signs of being a leader and an organiser?

Take initiative in the workplace, ask intelligent questions and don’t be afraid to suggest ideas. Be quick to help and slow to get frustrated when dealing with others in a team, and always be responsible for yourself and your own actions.

Problem Solving

While employers will not expect you to solve major problems, they will expect that you to make a genuine effort to figure out small problems and take initiative, such as what to do next or where to find a commonly used tool.

Always report problems to your supervisor, however, if you really want to impress, try reading the manual, researching the problem or asking questions to really understand the issue and how to find a solution. Consider if you can solve the actual cause of the problem, not just treat the obvious after effect or symptoms.

Initiative and Enterprise

Having the initiative to spot odd jobs, writing them on a list, and tackling them when you have time, will impress every boss. Making suggestions on how you have improved the task or saved time shows productivity and enterprise.

How flexible are you to new tasks or change of routine? Do you adapt quickly and do you show concern for the outcome of your work and place of employment?

Do more than simply the bare minimum and not only will your boss be happy but you can feel a sense of pride in your work too.

Planning and Organising

Demonstrating your planning and organisational skills starts with preparing properly for work. Have you read any materials or completed any training that needed to be done prior to your shift? Have you organised to be there on time? Is your uniform clean and do you have all the tools and materials you need?

Being organised demonstrates care and responsibility, if you can organise yourself well you’re more likely to get more responsibility within the workplace. Pay rises are earned.


Increasingly, workers must be responsible for managing themselves. Employers will be impressed if you demonstrate you are continually trying to improve your performance by seeking feedback and practising your skills. Don’t just do what you’re asked, go above and beyond and make your own mark on your work.

Acknowledge your mistakes, strive for improvement and take note of what others in the team do to succeed. Perhaps your team member has a really efficient way of taking orders, can you learn the same system so you both work better together and therefore increase productivity for your employer?


wi9yf7kTQxCNeY72cCY6_Images of Jenny Lace Plasticity Publish (4 of 25).jpgTo keep up with an ever changing industry and labour market, workers must keep acquiring new skills and knowledge. Often this is achieved “on-the-job” but it can also come from reading or higher education and training. Turn quiet moments at work into learning time.

Savvy people observe what is going on and jump in to it.

Look into entry level training courses if you want to move up in your industry, talk to your employer to see if you can complete certificates through your workplace.


Take an interest in the technology you’re exposed to in the workplace and learn how to use it well. Some systems and machines are used throughout different companies and industries helping you not only be more useful in your current workplace but building your skillset for future employment opportunities.