In a lot of ways, a graduate of ATS Heavy Equipment Operator Training School has got hard skills. Knowing how to identify soil, read a grade, understand site layout management, etc. while competently maintaining and safely operating a wide variety of heavy equipment is the stuff you will be doing every day for the life of your job. That’s hard, but that’s why training is important. The “hard” skills are the ones you use on the job.
But in order to actually get that job, you need some “soft” skills. These are things you won’t necessarily be doing on the job so it is easy to overlook them in preparing for a career. But ATS doesn’t overlook those soft skills; they are included in your training. Our Career Services office starts working with students from the beginning, helping to create a plan for what happens after your training is complete. Part of that plan is going to involve these three “soft” skills:
- application procedures
- networking methods
- interviewing techniques
You will probably appreciate the value of the second, networking, throughout your career because it is always going to be important to stay connected to people. But in the job-search sense, it is a soft skill because you don’t use it all the time while doing your job. You won’t be applying for a job every day, either, or interviewing. But each of these skills can get you hired.
They get you hired because they help you get through the filters an employer uses to narrow down who will be interviewed, and then they help you give a good impression of your abilities when you interview. If your application isn’t submitted properly, the computer will reject it before a person ever sees it. If the references on your resume aren’t so great (networking), then you might not get called in for the interview. And if you are not able to show how you will be an asset to the company at the interview, you probably won’t get hired.
So our Career Services works with you as part of the training, helping you develop those soft skills while you are learning the hard skills that will keep you employed as a successful professional heavy equipment operator.