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Being able to adapt to change has been ranked top of the skills most requested by employers in Malta, according to research from Eurostat, the statistical office of the EU.

Eurostat has compiled data from online job advertisements (OJAs), identifying the skills that are highlighted most frequently in job descriptions. The study identified 1,000 job portals in Europe, from which 500 were chosen for data collection. The data is split into 32 occupation categories and contains figures for every EU country. The tool primarily aims to serve students deciding on their study paths, job-holders looking to keep their skillset up to date or change positions, and also unemployed people searching for a job. It also serves as a tool for recruiting companies to review the demand for skills in the labour market.

The latest figures are for 2022, and Eurostat has stated that the data is still experimental, with its data source still new in the field of official statistics.

Out of the 32 categories, 27 of the occupation categories requested the skill of adapting to change the most. These include occupations related to administration, sales, marketing and public relations, as well as finance professionals, among others.

The only categories which requested another skill the most were: architects, planners surveyors and designers; database and network professionals; electrical equipment installers and repairers; engineering professionals; and physical and engineering science technicians. All of these occupations had the ability to work in teams as the top requirement.

When considering the year the data is derived from – 2022 – it becomes more evident as to why the adaptability has become so important. The post-COVID-19 pandemic years have been filled with uncertainty, leading to a dynamic business environment.

Businesses have had to face a number of macroeconomic factors that have had an impact on performance and work processes, including periods of high inflation, rising cost of living, and the conflict in Ukraine. Since then, there have been further issues, including those posed by conflicts in the Middle East.

When coupled with the substantial improvements in technology and the introduction of artificial intelligence (AI) into the workplace, being adaptable has arguably never been as important as it is today.

As a result, businesses are constantly searching for candidates who are open and willing to learn new things and take on new challenges, reacting quickly to changing factors.

This ability is particularly important when working on certain projects, developing strategies, and applying different approaches in order to reach goals.

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